Two Bundesliga sides with Europa League aspirations face off on Friday night as Wolfsburg hosts Werder Bremen at the Volkswagen Arena.
Both teams have had decent starts to the season. Wolfsburg are still unbeaten, and come into this contest off of two straight wins. Bremen, meanwhile, snatched a point on the road against reigning champions Bayern Munich last week to maintain their good run of form.
With that in mind, this contest seems set to be an exciting one.
There are few concerns for either side on the injury front.
Wolfsburg will be without Marin Pongracic and Josuha Guilavogui, while Daniel Ginczek is listed as doubtful as well.
Top scorer Niclas Fullkrug is a game time decision for Bremen, but other than him, the team has a clean bill of health going into Friday’s match.
Wolfsburg: Casteels, Baku, Lacroix, Brooks, Roussillon, Arnold, Schlager, Brekalo, Mehmedi, Steffen, Weghorst
Werder Bremen: Pavlenka, Gross, Toprak, Friedl, Selassie, Eggestein, Mohwald, Augustinsson, Bittencourt, Sargent, Rashica
Ones to watch
The man in form for Wolfsburg, Wout Weghorst will look to continue his purple patch at the expense of Bremen.
The Dutch forward has been a consistent goalscorer ever since coming to the club back in 2018, but he’s been even better this season. After a slow start, Weghorst has scored in four out of his last five games, becoming a key part of his teams success as a result.
An old school striker, Weghorst uses his height and strength to devastating effect, holding up the ball or heading home crosses from close range. He just knows where to be in the area, which allows him to pounce on loose balls in front of goal.
He scored the winner the last time these two sides faced off, and Wolfsburg will hope Weghorst can do the same this time around as well.
It’s been a tough few years for Josh Sargent, but it seems like the hard work is finally starting to pay off.
Coming to Germany from the United States at the age of 18, the American needed time to adjust to life in Europe. He began his Bremen career playing for the youth and reserve sides before eventually getting called up to the first team. Time on the field was hard to come by, and even though the youngster did impress on some occasions, it was clear he was still a work in progress.
There was plenty of pressure on Sargent going into this season, as he was given a starting spot in the lineup. It was time to sink or swim for the youngster, and he has thrived ever since.
He had his best game for the club against Munich last week. Even though he didn’t score, Sargent assisted the only goal Bremen had and was influential throughout the contest. Dropping deep and pushing forward at the right time, the American was everywhere all afternoon.
The performances have come, and the goals will soon follow if Sargent keeps playing this well, which is potentially scary news for Wolfsburg.
Last time out
As mentioned earlier, these two sides faced off near the end of last season at the Wohninvest Weserstadion.
A close contest, both keepers were forced into good saves at different moments.
Just as it seemed like the game was destined to end 0-0, Wout Weghorst popped up to grab the winner for Wolfsburg. Felix Klaus got free down the wing before whipping in a superb cross that picked out the big Dutch striker. He made no mistake with the finish, heading home from close range to clinch all three points for his side.
Where to watch
The contest will be broadcasted on BT Sport 2 in the UK, while fans in the United States can see the game on ESPN +.