By Ben Sully @SullyBen
After losing 3-0 to Bayern Munich last weekend, Union Berlin will be looking to return to winning ways when they face FC Köln on Saturday.
|Urs Fischer.||Photo: Steffen Prößdorf, CC BY-SA 4.0|
Union Berlin’s nine-game unbeaten run across all competitions came to an abrupt end last Sunday when they were thrashed 3-0 by reigning champions Bayern Munich. First half goals from Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting, Kingsley Coman and Jamal Musiala guided Bayern to a comfortable victory, which leaves Union in third position – three points behind the Bavarians and Borussia Dortmund.
As things stand, Union still remain in the title race, and they will be looking forward to returning to the Stadion An der Alten Försterei this weekend. Die Eisernen are one of two clubs – alongside Bayern – who are yet to lose a home league game this season, after winning seven and drawing three of their 10 Bundesliga home matches. In fact, Union have not been beaten in a home league encounter since losing 3-0 to Borussia Dortmund in February last year.
Union will also take confidence from the fact that they have never lost any of their seven top-flight meetings with FC Köln.
András Schäfer will miss out with a foot injury, while there are also doubts over the availability of Niko Gießelmann and Jerome Roussillon.
Köln will be looking for a response after losing their last two matches to Stuttgart and Wolfsburg without conceding. In their home meeting with Wolfsburg last weekend, goals from Yannick Gerhardt and Maximilian Arnold condemned Steffen Baumgart’s side to a 2-0 defeat.
Although Die Geißböcke are seven points clear of the bottom three, they will be mindful that they could get dragged into a relegation battle if they are unable to return to winning ways in the near future.
If they are to improve on their current 12th position, Köln will need to start winning on the road. Die Geißböcke have won only one of their 11 away league games, which took place against Wolfsburg in September. Since that result, Köln have picked up just three points from their last three Bundesliga away games.
The visitors will be unable to call upon the services of Sebastian Andersson, Florian Dietz, Mark Uth, Luca Kilian, Jan Thielmann and Kristian Pedersen.