Koln vs Hoffenheim by Gustav
Koln had some decent moments away to Leverkusen last weekend and even managed to take the lead in 23rd minute with a goal from Guirassy, but were actually quite passive once the home team upped the tempo and somehow, simply couldn't avoid defeat in the second halftime being obviously a weaker side, at least in that part of the match.
Hosts reverted the scoreline thanks to goals from Bailey and Bender in 53rd and 73rd minute, as Koln remained at the rock bottom position with just two points earned in last ten rounds, but the side is showing somehow better performances - actually needing less chances in order to start scoring goals. They finally replied with improved performance in attack, beating BATE Borisov in Europa League 5:2 at home last Thursday evening and keep their chances of reaching the knockout phase.
Hosts could be playing in their 4-4-2 formation with Osako and Guirassy as forwards. Injured are left back/ defensive midfielder Jonas Hector (3/0), forwards Jhon Cordoba (7/0) and veteran Claudio Pizarro (2/0), as well as right back Marco Hoger (5/0). Midfielder Marcel Risse (4/0) is doubtful with a muscle problem.
On the other side, Hoffenheim comes from yet another negative result, as the side suffered 1:3 defeat in front of own fans against Gladbach last weekend, even though they started the game well and took the lead in 25th minute with a goal from Demirbay, however their game plan fall apart in the second halftime.
Guests appeared much more attacking in overall very open second halftime, but they were the ones who were way more effective getting the victory thanks to goals from Hazard, Ginter and Vestergaard. After four matches without a victory in Bundesliga, two draws and two defeats, the side is at seventh position with a point less than Europa League placed sides and two less than Champions League positionated and surely want to improve here as much as possible.
Hoffenheim weren't completely up to the task last Thursday evening in their Europa League game away to Basakshier taking only a point in a 1:1 draw even though they had the lead till third minute of additional time. Still, they remain with some chances of progressing further having four points less than leaders from Ludogorets and three less than second placed Braga with two rounds to be played more.
Guests are set to play in 3-5-2 formation with Wagner and Kramaric as forwards. They continue missing central defenders Ermin Bicakcic (2/0), Kevin Vogt (9/0), offensive Robert Zulj (no performance so far) and striker Mark Uth (9/5), all of them nearing return from injuries. Midfielders Pavel Kaderabek, Lukas Rupp and offensive Serge Gnabry are all doubtful.
- Koln have drawn their last 3 home matches against Hoffenheim.
There's no doubt that the quality of Koln is far above the current position they have at the table. In my opinion, they are starting slowly to play better and more effective football and I definitely see them being able to answer here against anyway very offensively quality Hoffenheim.