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  • October 2, 2010
  • • 14:30
  • • Grundig-Stadion, Nürnberg
  • Referee: M. Fritz
  • • Attendance: 48548

Bundesliga Preview: Nuernberg - Schalke 04

Bundesliga Preview: Nuernberg - Schalke 04

Basement sides Nuernberg and Schalke will both be looking for a win that could catapult them up the league table...

Bundesliga Strugglers Look For Consistency

The Bundesliga's most famous fahrstuhlmannschaften (yo-yo club if your German isn't the best) have made an average start to this year's campaign. The club currently sit in 14th place with six points from six games. Worryingly Dieter Hecking's men have one win to their name, a 2-1 home victory against Stuttgart nine days ago.

Most recently the Bavarian club were slightly unlucky to exit Commerzbank Arena as 2-0 losers to Eintracht Frankfurt last Saturday. Nuernberg started the game slow and deservedly fell behind after 17 minutes. However the young side regrouped well and arguably had the better of the game before Cris scored a goal in the last few minutes to rub salt into the away side's wounds.

"It is hard for me to put it into words. In the first 20 to 25 minutes we were not as awake as in previous games and deserved to all behind," coach Dieter Hecking told the club's official website after the game. Yet the coach still felt his side were unlucky to return home with nothing. 

"As my team played in the second-half we actually deserved a reward. In six games we have now hit the post five times so I do not blame our young group."

Cause for concern for Nuernberg supporters will be the club's lack of firepower upfront.  The club currently have three strikers injured including Swiss international Albert Bunjaku who has been ruled out for six months with a serious knee injury, a devastating blow for Hecking's team. The club will be relying on 21-year-old striker Julian Schieber who is on-loan from Bayer Leverkusen to provide goals for the team. The striker scored his first goal for the club in that Stuttgart win and the promising striker will need to be at his best to penetrate the Schalke rearguard.

Schalke Hope To Continue On Their Road To Redemption

After making their worst ever start to a Bundesliga campaign, Schalke have good reason to believe they are getting their season back on track. Four straight league defeats saw the Gelsenkirchen outfit rooted to the bottom of the Bundesliga and left everyone wondering what had happened to the team who finished runners-up last season.

However in recent weeks their has been a revival at the club; a revival that was kicked off when the team won 2-1 away to Freiburg the same night as Nuernberg earned their solitary win.

Last week Schalke drew 2-2 away at Borussia Monchengladbach. The club would have hoped for another win but a big positive for Felix Magath's men was the way in which his side came from 2-0 behind to earn a point, in the process showing great team spirit and resilience. The club followed up this result with a morale-boosting 2-0 win over Portuguese champions Benfica midweek so it is fair to say that their is confidence around the club currently sitting in 17th position in the Bundesliga.

"We're lagging behind in the table so we really need to pick up some points. But winning in Nuernburg won't be easy," coach Magath told the Schalke official website. "The Benfica game has given us new confidence though. The victory did us good, especially as we didn't concede."

Schalke have clearly had the better of Nuernberg in the past with the die konigsblauen winning eight out of the team's ten previous meetings. Unfortunately for Nuernberg supporters the other two games ended in draws. However, this season it is impossible to know which Schalke will turn up. Hecking's side will be hoping it's the one that made such a dreadful start to the league campaign.



The home side are expected to name the same starting eleven that were unlucky to lose 2-0 to Eintracht Frankfurt last weekend. Christian Eigler was expected to come in on the left wing for Mike Frantz but the former Arminia Bielefeld man is struggling with a thigh strain. Summer signing Rubin Okotie has returned to fitness and is expected to take his place on the bench. Nuernberg are still without Albert Bunjaku who suffered a serious knee injury a fortnight ago. The Swiss international striker will miss six months of the season so Julian Schieber, on-loan from Bayer Leverkusen, is expected to lead the front-line on his own.

Probable Starting XI: Schafer - Judt, Nilsson, Maroh, Pinola - Ekici, Gunogan, Simons, Hegeler, Frantz - Schieber

Schalke 04

The Gelsenkirchen outfit have no fresh injury concerns after their 2-0 victory over Benfica in the Champions League on Wednesday. Tim Hoogland is still out with a knee injury so is left to wait to make his second debut for Schalke. Christian Pander and Levan Kenia are nearing full fitness but will sit out of this one. Benedikt Howedes returns from a one match European suspension and is expected to start at right-back. Greek youngster Kyriakos Papadopoulos looks likely to keep Nicolas Plestan out of the side after forming an impressive partnership with Christoph Metzelder. Jefferson Farfan's midweek goal and performance will have given Felix Magath food for thought as to whether to stick with the Peruvian or opt for the more defensive-minded Jermaine Jones.

Probablt Starting XI: Neuer - Howedes, Metzelder, Papadoploulos, Schmitz - Farfan, Matip, Jurado, Rakitic - Raul, Huntelaar

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Last Five Matches
Team News
Available Squads
1Raphael SchäferGoalkeeper
20Pascal BielerDefender
3Per NilssonDefender
5Andreas WolfDefender
16Juri JudtMidfielder
17Mike FrantzMidfielder
2Timmy SimonsMidfielder
8Ilkay GündoganMidfielder
13Jens HegelerMidfielder
20Mehmet EkiciMidfielder
23Julian SchieberStriker
21Marvin PlattenhardtDefender
6Dominik MarohDefender
11Marek MintalStriker
21Dario VidosicMidfielder
30Alexander StephanGoalkeeper
18Almog CohenMidfielder
19Isaac BoakyeStriker
1Manuel NeuerGoalkeeper
13Lukas SchmitzDefender
21Christoph MetzelderDefender
14Kyriakos PapadopoulosDefender
4Benedikt HöwedesDefender
17Jefferson Agustin FarfánStriker
32Joel MatipDefender
13Jermaine JonesMidfielder
25Klaas-Jan HuntelaarStriker
33Mathias SchoberGoalkeeper
2Hans SarpeiDefender
17Hao JunminMidfielder
24Peer KlugeMidfielder
4Ivan RakiticMidfielder
18Erik JendrisekStriker
Players to Watch
Ilkay Gündogan
Ilkay Gündogan
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 8
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
The Gelsenkirchen born midfielder's emergence last season was one of only a few positives in a campaign that saw that the club immersed in a relegation battle. The 19-year-old has pace and trickery in abundance and is seen as one of the brightest young talents in the Bundesliga.
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 18
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
After a slow start the Spanish attacking midfielder is starting to show the Gelsenkirchen faithful why Schalke spent €13m on his services. The former Atletico Madrid man possesses good playmaking skills and has the potential to play a killer pass to unlock the Nuernberg defence.

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