By Ben Sully @SullyBen
Two sides level on 30 points in the Bundesliga table will face off on Friday when 10th-placed Borussia Mönchengladbach face Werder Bremen, who currently occupy 11th position.
Since beating Bayern Munich 3-2 on February 18, Gladbach have picked up just one point from three games. In their most recent outing, die Fohlen travelled to the Red Bull Arena to face RB Leipzig.
Alassane Pléa spurned the chance to give his side the lead when he failed to convert his 53rd-minute spot-kick. It proved to be a costly miss for Gladbach, as Leipzig moved through the gears to rack up three goals in 22 minutes, condemning Daniel Farke’s side to a disappointing 3-0 defeat.
Having lost their last three away games by a combined 11-1 scoreline, Gladbach may be looking forward to returning to home surroundings on Friday. The hosts have picked up 23 of their 30 points this season from home games, and they have tended to perform well against Bremen at BORUSSA-PARK. Since losing 4-1 to the in October 2010, Gladbach have avoided defeat in their last 10 home league meetings with Friday’s opponents.
Tony Jantschke and Julian Weigl will miss out through injury, while Ramy Bensebaini serves the final game of a two-match suspension.
After winning promotion from the second tier last season, Bremen will be content with their current standing in the Bundesliga table. However, they will be keen to experience an upturn in fortunes after losing four of their last five games.
Their most recent defeat took place against Bayer Leverkusen last weekend. Bremen took the lead through Marvin Ducksch, but goals from Mitchel Bakker, Jeremie Frimpong and Adam Hložek swung the game in Leverkusen’s favour. Niclas Füllkrug pulled a goal back from the penalty spot in the 86th minute, but Bremen were unable to find an equaliser, as they fell to a narrow 3-2 defeat.
Bremen currently have the second-worst defensive record in the top flight after conceding 46 goals in 24 league games which will concern Ole Werner.
As the visitors target a strong performance from their backline, they will also be looking to complete a league double over their opponents after thrashing Gladbach 5-1 when the two sides met in October.
Werner has confirmed that Martin Friedl, Christian Groß and Leonardo Bittencourt remain unavailable due to illness. Milos Veljkovic, meanwhile, has joined Jean-Manuel Mbom and Felix Agu in the treatment room.