Probably the most interesting match-up of the German Bundesliga Round 34 will take place at the Volksparkstadion in Hamburg where the host team will lock horns with VfL Wolfsburg in the direct duel for the survival in the German Bundesliga.
When the final whistle blows on Saturday, one of these teams will be the team that will together with Ingolstadt FC and Darmstadt FC, play in the Zweita next season. Such high stakes are a sure signal of a great and historic match-up and we are all looking forward to it.
Exception from that could only take the fans of these two teams who will definitely be a little bit more nervous than ordinary. Match analysis is just below so let’s take a closer look.
HAMBURGER SV vs. VfL WOLFSBURG
3-Way: 1: Hamburger SV +171; X: +256 Draw; VfL Wolfsburg +190
Spread 0: Hamburger SV -105; VfL Wolfsburg +100
Total +2.5: Over +104; Under -105
The 12-game winless start of the season by the team from the north of Germany showed the path through which the Hamburger SV would go this year and now, as expected, one round before the season finale, the team is in front of a must-win game if they want to stay in the German Bundesliga next season.
During the mid-season the team had a spell of good results going on but that quickly deteriorated after entering another nefarious winless streak that now lasts five games. Currently, they rank below the relegation line with 35 points in 33 games, two points fewer than their next opponent, meaning that the victory over the Wolves is only option.
The Red Shorts are 2-2-4 in the last eight matchups including a 2-1-1 record in the last four home soil games. Another dooming stat data is that they haven’t won a game in the German Bundesliga since April 8th, and many fans are sweating right now knowing that their team is currently experiencing a form downslide before this crucial match-up. Overall record at home is 7-4-5 with 19-24 goal difference (31-60 overall) and they rank 13th in the home league table with 25 of 48 possible points earned.
One encouraging and positive fact for the home team is that they’ve earned 71% of their total points in Hamburg. Hamburger scores 1.19 and concedes 1.50 goals per match in front of their own crowd (0.94-1.82 overall) and 62% of their home games had over 2.5 goals while every fourth game at Volksparkstadion had over 3.5 goals in total. 12% of the home matches had over 2.5 goals at the halftime and both teams scored in 56% of their home games. Hamburger scored at least one goal in both halves in every fourth home game while they conceded at least one goal in both halves in almost every fifth home match. Most common result at home is a 2:1 win (occurred four times) while most common score at the halftime was 0:0 (occurred eight times).
Michael Gregoritsch, Nicolai Muller and Bobby Wood lead the team in scoring with five goals each while Muller also tops the team in assists with six. Passing segment belongs to defenders Gotoku Sakai and Mergim Mavraj who have solid 881 and 813 total passes while goalies Rene Adler (19 appearances), Christian Mathenia (13 appearances) and Tom Mickel (one appearance) collected 88 saves along with eight games with clean sheets combined.
Dennis Diekmeier (yellow cards) is suspended for the next matchup while goalkeeper Rene Adler (Rib) is out for the season. Pierre-Michael Lasogga’s (Thigh) and Nicolai Muller’s (Knee) status is unknown while Albin Ekdal (Thigh) is listed as doubtful. Lewis Holtby (unknown), Nabil Bahoui (Shoulder) and Andreas Hirzel (Muscle) are all back in training.
Similar to their next opponent, the VfL Wolfsburg team entered the season with a downslide. They recorded their first home win after almost four months of play, on December 14th (1:0 against Frankfurt). Poor form in the German Bundesliga continued throughout the entire season and now they find themselves in a position when they must get a positive result on the road in order to stay in the league.
Nevertheless, there might be some room for optimism given the fact that Wolfsburg team is one of the teams in the German Bundesliga that plays better on the road than at home (19 points earned on the road, 18 at home) but getting a positive result in a win or die type of game without much support from the stands could present a very hard task.
When it comes to the recent form, the Wolves are 2-2-4 in the last eight match-ups and they are 1-1-2 in the last four road games. Team is undefeated in last two rounds and overall record as visitors is 5-4-7. Goal difference on the road is 18-25 (33-50 overall) and they rank on a very high sixth place in the road league table with 19 of 48 possible points earned. Wolfsburg scores 1.13 and concedes 1.56 goals away (1.00-1.52 overall) and 50% of their road matches had over 2,5 goals while every fourth away game had over 3.5 goals in total.
Every fifth road game had over 4.5 goals in total but no away game had over 2.5 goals at the halftime. In 19% of their visiting matches the Wolves managed to score at least one goal in both halves while in 31% of those matches they managed to concede at least one goal in both halves. Both teams scored in 44% of their visiting games while most common results on the road were 2:0 win, 1:1 draw and 1:0 loss (all occurred twice). Most common score at the halftime was 0:0 (occurred five times).
German striker Mario Gomez tops the team in scoring with 16 goals while the newcomer Yunus Malli has seven in his account. Malli is also teams leading assister with eight while passing segment belongs to midfielder Luiz Gustavo with 1038 total passes. Goalkeepers Diego Benaglio (14 appearances) and Koen Casteels (19 appearances) collected 107 saves and they also have 11 games with clean sheets combined.
Jeffrey Bruma (Knee) is out for the season while Ricardo Rodriguez (Ankle) and Ismail Azzaoui (Cruciate ligament) are listed as doubtful for Saturday.
Hamburger SV vs. VfL Wolfsburg – Match Prediction
It is very hard to predict this kind of live or die game. When I look at the entire season I think that Wolfsburg team deserves the survival more and having in mind that a draw would be enough for them. Safer bet might be at least one goal by both teams and the over 2.5 goals!!!
My pick: Both teams score (-130)
Additional Pick: Over 2.5 goals (+104)
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