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Bundesliga

  • December 2, 2011
  • • 19:30
  • • BayArena, Leverkusen
  • Referee: W. Stark
  • • Attendance: 25948
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Bundesliga Preview: Bayer Leverkusen v Hoffenheim

Bundesliga Preview: Bayer Leverkusen v Hoffenheim

Bongarts

Robin Dutt will be hoping to avoid having to come from behind as his team have been forced to do in their previous two matches


PROBABLE LINE-UPS

BAYER LEVERKUSEN

Leno
Castro, Reinartz, Freidrich, Kadlec
Bender, Rolfes
Sam, Ballack, Schurrle
Derdiyok


HOFFENHEIM
 
Hertha BSC
Starke
Beck, Vorsah, Compper, Braafheid
Williams, Rudy, Salihovic
Mlapa, Ibisevic
, Babel



Tranquillo Barnetta and Rene Adler are still out following knee surgery and are not expected back until January. Omer Toprak is also out, having fell awkwardly on his pelvis in Saturday's game against Hertha Berlin, and could be out for up to two weeks. Stefan Reinartz should take his place at centre-back.

On a more positive note, striker Eren Derdiyok's stunning form of late should see him keep his place in the starting XI for the hosts.

Chinedu Obasi and Roberto Firmino have been dropped from the squad after showing up late for training. Club general manager Ernst Tanner and coach Holger Stanislawski have agreed to suspend the pair, as this is said to be the latest offence in a long list from the duo.

Two talented players down, and still looking for his preferred formation, Stanislawski's only good news is that skipper Andreas Beck will return to action after serving his cumulative yellow card suspension.


DID YOU KNOW?
  • Suspended Roberto Firmino is Hoffenheim's top scorer with five goals, on par with Bayer's in-form striker Eren Derdiyok.
  • Despite being purchased as a defensive player, USA international Fabian Johnson's attacking eye has seen him rack up an impressive five assists for his new club.
  • Both Hanno Balitch and Michael Ballack have four yellow cards going into Friday's clash. One more for either player will see them suspended for their following match.
  • Hoffenheim's last win was over a month ago, a 2-1 home win in the DFB Pokal against Koln. More worryingly, Stanislawski's men have lost their last four away games in the Bundesliga.
  • Bayer Leverkusen have never lost to Hoffenheim since the Sinsheim club's arrival in the Bundesliga three years ago.
Suspended Roberto Firmino is Hoffenheim's top scorer with five goals, on par with Bayer's in-form striker Eren Derdiyok.

Despite being purchased as a defensive player, USA international Fabian Johnson's attacking eye has seen him rack up an impressive five assists for his new club.

Both Hanno Balitch and Michael Ballack have four yellow cards going into Friday's clash. One more for either player will see them suspended for their following match.

Hoffenheim's last win was over a month ago, a 2-1 home win in the DFB Pokal against Koln. More worryingly, Stanislawski's men have lost their last four away games in the Bundesliga.

Bayer Leverkusen have never lost to Hoffenheim since the Sinsheim club's arrival in the Bundesliga three years ago.

Players to watch

E. Derdiyok

Position: Attacker

Games: 0

  • 0
  • 0
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The Swiss striker has netted four goals in his last two games, and will undoubtedly be looking to keep up the good form to bag himself a starting berth when the Champions League comes back around.

F. Johnson

Position: Midfielder

Games: 0

  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
As mentioned, the American has a keen eye for a pass, but is largely a defensive player. Expect Johnson to cover a lot of ground against a superior Bundesliga side.

Editor's Prediction

Bayer need a solid win to get some momentum going and keep their heads above the rest of the Bundesliga pack that are chasing a place in Europe - what better place to it than at the BayArena, and what better team to do it against than an ailing Hoffenheim side?

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Bayer Leverkusen

Hoffenheim

Wins
3
1
1
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

TSV Bayer 04 Leverkusen LEV
TSV Bayer 04 Leverkusen Bayer Leverkusen
Draw
TSG 1899 Hoffenheim HOF
TSG 1899 Hoffenheim Hoffenheim
88%

Top 3 Predictions

TSV Bayer 04 Leverkusen LEV
2 - 0
TSG 1899 Hoffenheim HOF
TSV Bayer 04 Leverkusen LEV
3 - 1
TSG 1899 Hoffenheim HOF
TSV Bayer 04 Leverkusen LEV
3 - 0
TSG 1899 Hoffenheim HOF

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