Gelsenkirchen Goal Drought On The CardsStats
Schalke v Monchengladbach
A match which already looks pivotal to both’s hopes of a Champions League spot takes place when Schalke entertain Borussia Monchengladbach in Friday night’s Bundesliga clash.
Schalke came away from Munich with a more than acceptable point on Wednesday night thanks to an equaliser for Benedikt Howedes just five minutes after Arjen Robben had given Bayern the lead midway through the second half. It could have even better for the visitors though, as Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting missed a penalty inside the opening ten minutes that saw the Bavarians reduced to ten men.
Roberto Di Matteo’s side have picked up four points from six since their return from the winter break though and lost only one of their last eight, while also keeping clean sheets in two of their last three.
Cameroon international Choupo-Moting is the club’s top scorer this season with nine Bundesliga goals to his name and ten overall, but only one in his past five appearances.
Successive 1-0 victories since their return to action, over Stuttgart and, most recently, Freiberg have moved Borussia Monchengladbach into the top three, five points adrift of Wolfsburg in second but still 13 behind runaway leaders Bayern, despite the champions’ recent blip. Monchengladbach have now won five and lost just one of their last seven but only two of the other sides who make up the top half of the Bundesliga table have scored fewer goals than Lucien Favre’s charges although only the league leaders have conceded fewer in the league.
Attacking midfielder Patrick Hermann has scored the only goal of the game in each of the last two games and leads the club’s goalscoring charts for his side with ten goals this season.
Dutch striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar has to sit out another five games for Schalke after being a given a six-match ban for a reckless challenge in their win over Hannover last weekend. Di Matteo also has a host of injury absentees to contend with as Julian Draxler, Dennis Aogo, Marco Hoger, Chinedu Obasi, Saed Kolasinac and Jefferson Farfan are all sidelined.
Midfielder Andre Hahn is expected to miss out for Monchengladbach with an Achilles problem while Ibrahima Traore is also doubtful although they are the visitors only injury worries.
The hosts crushed Schalke when the pair met in Borussia Park last September when Hahn grabbed a brace in a 4-1 win for Monchengladbach – their joint biggest win of the season in the German top flight. That made it three wins on the spin in the fixture for Favre’s side while Schalke have won only one of the last seven meetings with their last home win against these opponents coming back in August 2011. There’s also been only two draws in the past 16 clashes between the pair.
With only two points between them in the table it’s no surprise to see very little to choose between the sides in match betting either, with the hosts marginal favourites at 6/4 versus 7/4 for an away win.
That might logically point toward a draw but injuries, recent history and their fine momentum would sway me towards Monchengladbach.
With only five goals in the last four games involving both it’s difficult to see many goals going in either so take Both Teams To Score – No, at 6/5 while under 2.5 goals should be snapped up at 20/21.