Bochum will have to go through Matthias Ginter, and will be hoping the Borussia Mönchengladbach defender doesn’t score at the other end at the Vonovia Ruhrstadion on Friday (kick-off: 8:30 p.m. CET).
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Results have been mixed for Bochum in the first part of 2022. A stunning 4-2 victory over record-breaking champions Bayern Munich was the highlight, although it was only one of the three wins in nine league games recorded by the promoted side since the turn of the year. Thomas Reis’ side have drawn three and as many defeats in that spell, recently slipping a 1-0 lead in the loss to Eintracht Frankfurt. A second straight season of Bundesliga football is firmly in sight, however, with the Ruhr district club sitting in relative comfort in 11th place, nine points clear of the relegation play-off spot, with eight rounds of fixtures. remaining. Defenders Cristian Gamboa and Maxim Leitsch are set to return to the side, but long-range goalscorer Milos Pantovic is unavailable. Striker Christopher Antwi-Adjei, meanwhile, could fend off Takuma Asano.
Gladbach are on the hour-long road trip to Bochum on the back of club captain Lars Stindl’s return to the first team. The 33-year-old returned from injury as a second-half substitute in the Foals’ comfortable 2-0 win at home to Hertha Berlin, and is set to feature at some point on Matchday 27. Defender Nico Elvedi joins top scorer Jonas Hofmann on the sidelines, but Ramy Bensebaini is available again for head coach Adi Hütter after a one-game suspension. The Algerian is expected to overthrow Luca Netz on the left side, with Stefan Lainer vying for the place of United States international Joe Scally on the opposite flank. Marvin Friedrich is set to take on the Elvedi role alongside Jordan Beyer and Ginter, who joined in-form Alassane Plea on the scoresheet against Hertha. Borussia start the weekend 13th, two points behind their hosts.
Look: Highlights of Gladbach’s 2-0 win over Hertha
- Sebastian Polter is set to make his 90th Bundesliga appearance. He has scored 17 top-flight goals, eight of them this season.
- Encouragement for Bochum: Promotion of 2012/13 Fortuna Düsseldorf are the only Bundesliga side in history to lose after holding a nine-point cushion in the relegation zone with eight rounds of matches remaining.
- VfL are unbeaten in their last nine Bundesliga home games against Gladbach, dating back to a 2-0 loss on March 25, 1995.
- Ginter is set to make his 175th competitive appearance as a Gladbach player. The Germany international will end a five-year spell at the club this summer.
- Plea has been directly involved in seven goals (his own, four assists) over the past six matchdays. Only Christopher Nkunku of RB Leipzig bet (eight).
- Gladbach have conceded at least once in their last 17 Bundesliga away matches – their longest clean streak in 18 years.
Bohum: Riemann – Bockhorn, Bella-Kotchap, Masovic, Stafylidis – Löwen, Losilla (c), Rexhbecaj – Antwi-Adjei, Polter, Holtmann
submarines: Esser, Soares, Decarli, Osterhage, Hartwig, Asano, Bonga
Outside: Blum (calf), Gamboa (not included), Leitsch (not included), Locadia (hip), Pantovic (not included), Tesche (not included), Zoller (knee)
Coach: Thomas Reis
Gladbach: Sommer (c) – Beyer, Ginter, Bensebaini – Lainer, Neuhaus, Kone, Netz – Plea, Embolo – Thuram
submarines: Sippel, Kramer, Stindl, Benes, Jantschke, Scally, Noß, Bennetts, Gaal
Outside: Doucoure (muscular), Elvedi (not included), Hofmann (muscular)
Coach: Adi Hutter