Augsburg – Hamburg
Hamburg and Augsburg were both involved in goalless draws last weekend, draws that were enough for both sides to secure their top-flight status.
This season’s reverse fixture at Hamburg ended in a 1-1 draw. Torsten Oehrl gave Augsburg the lead with his debut goal in the Bundesliga, while Hamburg’s Peruvian striker Paolo Guerrero netted the equaliser.
Only once in their long BL history have Hamburg had as few points after 33 games of a BL season as they have this term. In 1991/92, they had accrued the same number of points, but had a better goal difference than they have this campaign (-21).
FCA have only lost one of their last 10 BL games at SGL Arena (W5, D4).
Jos Luhukay’s men have lost none of their last three league games (W1, D2).
HSV are unbeaten in three games, too (W1, D2), but haven’t scored more than one goal in any of their last 14 BL fixtures.
Augsburg have picked up five more points in 2012 (20) than they managed in the entire first half of the season (15).
Only Augsburg (14) have been involved in more draws than Hamburg this term (12, same as Hannover).
Only bottom-placed Lautern (23) have netted fewer goals than Augsburg and Hamburg this campaign (35 each).
HSV gaffer Thorsten Fink has faced Augsburg seven times during his active days and his managerial career, but has won none of these meetings (D3, L4).
Werder Bremen –Schalke
Werder have only enjoyed two wins in their last 14 BL encounters with Schalke (D4, L8).
In this season’s reverse fixture Bremen lost 5-0 away at Schalke – their heaviest defeat against the Miners since the introduction of the Bundesliga in 1963.
In three of the last four seasons Werder have failed to break the 45-points mark. The current and the last season are Bremen‘s two worst campaigns since current Werder manager Thomas Schaaf took charge of the club back in 1999.
The Northern Germans have gone eight games without a full three-point haul (D3, L5). The last time Werder endured a longer drought was over 16 years ago between September 1995 and February 1996 (12 games).
Schalke have won none of their last three BL away games (D2, L1) and have only enjoyed one win in their last seven on the road when they beat bottom-placed Lautern 4-1 in mid-March.
Bremen have only registered 13 points since the turn of the year. If they fail to pick up a win against the Miners they will have endured the worst second half of the season in the club’s long BL history.
Thomas Schaaf’s men have failed to shut their opponents out in any of their last eight league games and have only kept one clean sheet in their last 15 BL matches. Only already relegated Kaiserslautern (four) have posted fewer clean sheets than Werder this term (five, like Hertha).
S04 striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (27 goals) currently tops the BL scorer charts and could win the BL Top-Scorer canon for the first time in his career.
If the Dutchman nets twice against Werder, he would also set a new record for the most goals scored by a foreign player in a top-flight season in Germany (currently the record is jointly held by the Brazilians Ailton (03-04) and Grafite (08-09) who both notched 28 goals) and would equal the best goal tally ever posted by a Schalke player in a single BL season (Klaus Fischer netted 29 for the Miners in 75-76).
Spanish veteran Raul will play his last game in the German top flight against Werder after two years with Schalke which saw him score 28 league goals. Six of the 28 goals he scored for the Miners have come against Werder, against no other side has the former Real Madrid player netted that many in the Bundesliga.
Borussia Dortmund - Freiburg
Freiburg have only enjoyed one win in their last 12 BL outings at Dortmund (D2, L9) and have lost their last four at Signa Iduna Park on the spin.
Dortmund have only suffered one defeat in their last 10 league meetings with SCF (W7, D2) when they lost 3-1 away at Freiburg in May 2010.
If Borussia beat Freiburg they would become the first team to reach the mark of 80 points in a single BL season. The current best point tally posted by a team in a single BL season is 79 (Bayern in 72-73).
BVB only need a draw to ensure a new BL record for the best second half of the season. Since the turn of the year Jürgen Klopp’s men have already chalked up 44 points, the only side ever to reach the same number of points in the second half of a BL season were record champions Bayern in 71-72.
If Jürgen Klopp’s men can avoid defeat against SCF they would also become only the third team to go the entire second half of a BL season without a single defeat after Eintracht Frankfurt and Bayern München achieved that feat in 76-77 and 86-87 respectively.
Only champions-elect Dortmund (27 games) have gone longer without defeat than in-form Freiburg (10 games). If SCF can get something from their game at Dortmund they would set a new club record for the longest unbeaten run in the Bundesliga.
Dortmund have only suffered one defeat in their last 32 BL games on home soil (W25, D6). The only side to beat Borussia at Signal Iduna Park during the last 20 months were relegation-threatened Hertha in September 2011 (2-1).
Freiburg have only shipped six goals in their last 10 league games, fewer than any other side during that period.
Only Bayern (eight) have kept more clean sheets in 2012 than Dortmund and Freiburg (seven, same as Gladbach).
BVB top scorer Robert Lewandowski (20 goals) has netted four times in three league appearances against Freiburg and has on average scored every 49 minutes against SCF – against no other team has the Pole netted that frequently in the Bundesliga.
Hannover have won five and lost only one of their last seven league encounters with Kaiserslautern. Moreover, the Reds have won their last three BL home games against FCK, scoring 11 goals in the process.
With a win over Lautern Hannover would ensure European qualification in two consecutive seasons for the first time in the club’s history.
Despite their respectable points tally (45), Hannover currently have a negative goal difference (-5). The last BL team that managed to qualify for Europe with such a bad goal difference was Lautern in 99-00.
The Reds are the only side in the league still unbeaten at home this term (W9, D7). Hannover have never gone an entire BL campaign without a single home defeat. The last two teams to have registered an unblemished home record in a single BL season were Wolfsburg and Dortmund in 08-09.
Hannover lost 1-0 away at Leverkusen last weekend, but are the only side in the league yet to suffer back-to-back defeats this term.
Kaiserslautern will suffer relegation from the Bundesliga for the third time after 1996 and 2006. The Red Devils have registered the fewest wins (four) and netted the fewest goals (23) so far this term, the only side to score even fewer goals in a single BL season than Lautern this campaign was Tasmania Berlin in 65-66 (15).
Surprisingly, Lautern have only allowed a league-low three goals in the closing quarter-hour and are yet to concede after the 81st minute this term.
Lautern have only netted 16 goals in their last 24 league games, the exact same number of goals last season’s FCK top scorer Srdjan Lakic, who left the club in July 2011, scored for them in 2010-11.
Since Mame Diouf was ruled out for the rest of the season due to a knee injury, Hannover have gone three games without scoring a single goal. The former Man Utd player has scored six and assisted three goals in his so far 10 BL appearances for the Reds.
With only three goals to his name, Itay Shechter is Lautern’s top scorer this term. There has never been a team in BL history with a top scorer with less than four goals to his name at the end of a campaign.
Hertha Berlin – Hoffenheim
Hertha are looking to avoid their sixth relegation from the Bundesliga. If the Old Lady goes down Germany would be the only country in Europe without a top-flight club from the capital apart from Wales, where Cardiff City still have a chance of winning promotion to the Premier League via the Championship play-offs.
Both sides have won two of their last five BL meetings (D1).
Hertha have lost their last four home games on the trot, but have never suffered five consecutive defeats at Olympiastadion in the German top flight.
Only bottom-placed Lautern, who travel to Dortmund on the ultimate day of the campaign, have lost as many home games this term as Hertha (10 each).
Hoffenheim gaffer Markus Babbel led Hertha to promotion to the Bundesliga in 2011, but was sacked by the Berlin-based side in December. When Babbel was dismissed Hertha were in 11th place, four points clear of the relegation zone.
Markus Babbel played under the Hertha manager Otto Rehhagel for Bayern Munich in 95-96.
Levan Kobiashvili is set to make his 336th BL appearance, with which he would equal the Brazilian Ze Roberto for the most German top-flight games played by a foreign player.
Former Liverpool player Ryan Babel has netted four goals this term, but has failed to find the back of the net since a 3-1 win over Wolfsburg in September. The Dutchman is now without a goal in 24 league games and 1970 minutes (nearly 33 hours) of BL football, the longest drought of his professional career.
Hertha defender Christoph Janker, who is set to make his 50th BL appearance against Markus Babbel’s men, plied his trade with Hoffenheim between 2006 and 2009 and helped 1899 climb from the third to the top tier of German football during his stint with TSG.
FC Köln – Bayern Munich
Bayern have already suffered 23 defeats against Köln in the Bundesliga, only against Werder have the record champions lost more top-flight games (26).
On average, Bayern have only picked up 1.61 points per game against the Billygoats in the Bundesliga, their lowest points-per-game average against any of the current 18 BL teams.
Köln have only lost one of their last five BL meetings with FCB (W2, D3), when they were beaten 3-0 by the Munich-based side in this season’s reverse fixture.
In their last BL outing at Köln Bayern gave away a 2-0 lead at half-time, losing 3-2. Since that defeat FCB are unbeaten in league games in which they have held the lead.
Köln have gone eight games without a win (D2, L6), their longest winless run since the 05-06 when they went 18 games without a full three-point haul.
Bayern currently have the league’s best defensive record (21 goals conceded) and could equal the BL record for the fewest goals shipped by a team in a single BL season if they shut out Köln. If they can keep Köln from scoring they would also equal the BL record for the most clean sheets in a BL season (19).
Köln, on the other hand, have shipped more goals than any other team this term (71) and have already equalled their worst-ever defensive record in the Bundesliga with one game to go.
Since Opta‘s detailed data collection began in 04-05 the lowest number of goal attempts posted by a team in a BL season was 323 (Köln in 09-10). With one game left in the season the Billygoats currently stand at 294 shots and would need 29 attempts in their last game against Bayern to prevent a new negative record.
Mario Gomez (26 goals) is currently one goal behind leader Klaas-Jan Huntelaar in the BL scorer charts and still has the chance of winning the BL Top-Scorer Canon for the second year in a row. Against Köln, the German international could make his 50th appearance in all competitions this term.
Lukas Podolski has had a hand in 63% of his side‘s 38 league goals this term (18 goals, six assists), the highest ratio posted by any player in the top five European leagues. The German international made his summer move to Arsenal official during the week.
Mainz – Borussia Mönchengladbach
Mainz have won four and lost none of their five BL home games against Gladbach, conceding only one goal in the process.
Only against Nürnberg (six) have Mainz enjoyed more wins in the Bundesliga than against Gladbach (five).
Both sides have only picked up six points from their last five games and were involved in goalless draws last weekend.
Gladbach will play their 1500th BL match and their 750th BL game on the road. The Foals have netted 998 goals in their previous 749 BL away games.
Gladbach’s 46 league goals this term have been scored by only nine different players – a league-low.
Mainz have kept four clean sheets on the spin for the first time in their BL history. FSV haven’t conceded in 365 minutes in the league and could better their longest-ever run without conceding in the top flight set in 2006 when they went 408 minutes without allowing their opponents to score.
Mainz‘ last three games all ended in stalemates, a first in the club’s BL history. If their game against Gladbach sees no goals as well they would set a new all-time BL record for the most consecutive goalless draws.
Thomas Tuchel’s side have only lost one of their last 10 BL games on home soil (W6, D3) and haven’t conceded in 201 minutes at Coface Arena.
Gladbach haven’t won any of their last three away games (D1, L2), conceding exactly two goals in each of these three matches.
The Foals have netted a league-high 11 goals from outside the area this term.
Nürnberg – Bayer Leverkusen
Nürnberg have won three and lost none of their last four BL encounters with Leverkusen, keeping three clean sheets in the process.
Bayer’s longest-ever unbeaten run (24 games) in the Bundesliga ended with a 3-2 defeat away at Nürnberg in March 2010.
Leverkusen have only won one of their last five BL outings at Nürnberg (D1, L3) when they beat FCN 2-1 at Easycredit-Stadion in September 2007.
Dieter Hecking’s men are unbeaten in five games (W3, D2), netting 12 goals in the process – four goals more than they chalked up in their previous 11 games in 2012.
Bayer striker Stefan Kießling has netted nine goals in his last 12 BL appearances.
Philipp Wollscheid and Jens Hegeler will play their last match in a Nürnberg shirt against Bayer, both will join Leverkusen after this season.
Daniel Didavi has been directly involved in 10 of Nürnberg’s last 14 league goals (eight goals, two assists).
Michael Ballack will probably make his last-ever BL appearance. The former skipper of the German national team has featured in 266 BL games, scoring 77 goals in the process.
Hanno Balitsch left Leverkusen to join Nürnberg during the winter break. The 31-year-old plied his trade with Bayer between 2002 and 2005 and between 2010 and 2012.
Stuttgart – Wolfsburg
The Wolves have only won two of their 14 BL outings at Stuttgart (D3, L9).
Wolfsburg’s last win away at Stuttgart came back in 99-00 when they beat the Swabians 5-2. Since that win, VfL have won none of their last 11 BL games at Mercedes-Benz Arena (D3, L8).
None of the last nine competitive matches between these two sides has seen the visiting side prevail (eight wins for the respective home team, one draw).
The Swabians have taken 16 out of the available 18 points from their last six BL home games, scoring 18 goals in the process.
The Wolves are only 16th in the BL away table and have failed to score in six of their last nine league games on the road.
Current Wolves manager Felix Magath was in charge of the Swabians between February 2001 and June 2004.
Patrick Helmes has been directly involved in the Wolves last four BL goals (three goals, one assist). He is the BL player with the best goals-per-game ratio in 2012 (on goal per game).
Stuttgart have scored the second-most goals since the turn of the year (37), only champions-elect Dortmund have netted more in 2012.
Vedad Ibisevic and Martin Harnik have netted 51% (19 out of 37) of Stuttgart’s league goals in 2012, while Patrick Helmes and Mario Mandzukic have been responsible for 59% (13 out of 22) of the Wolves goals since the turn of the year.
The Swabians have gone six league games without a clean sheet.