Greuther Fürth vs Freiburg: probable line-ups, match stats and LIVE blog

With or without record goalscorer Nils Petersen, Freiburg know they can count on Vincenzo Grifo as they head to Greuther Fürth on Saturday (kick-off: 3.30pm CET).


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Home form has been crucial to the potential survival of Fürth, who were previously six unbeaten at Sportpark Ronhof, where they have collected 13 of their 14 points this season. That streak was cut short in a rather punitive fashion last Sunday with a 6-1 thrashing at the hands of RB Leipzig. This is despite a fourth-minute lead through Jamie Leweling, who is now three behind eight-goal top scorer Branimir Hrgota. The result leaves Die Kleeblatter nine points behind Hertha Berlin and VfB Stuttgart in the next two places, and 11 on outright safety still unlikely with eight games to go. Attacking midfielder Jeremy Dudziak is out with an Achilles problem, so Havard Nielsen will likely continue behind captain Hrgota and Leweling. Timothy Tillman is also expected to return in place of Julian Green after the two USA-eligible midfielders swapped places last week.

Petersen has gotten used to his role as a substitute at Freiburg, which isn’t a bad thing considering he holds the Bundesliga record for most goals scored from the bench. And getting the ball in the net was no problem for the Black Forest club either. They are unbeaten in five, with Grifo’s brace – including a free-kick into the top corner – giving them a 3-2 win over Wolfsburg last time out and putting Christian Streich’s men level on points with Leipzig and Hoffenheim, fourth, and only one behind Bayer Leverkusen in third. It was the impressive Nico Schlotterbeck who scored the winner with a thunderous kick, after starting the match alongside his brother Keven in defense. The latter could drop out as Streich reverts to a back four with a number of players still sidelined. Ermedin Demirovic could continue to keep Petersen out.

Look: Grifo and Schlotterbeck give Freiburg victory over Wolfsburg

Match statistics

  • Five of Hrgota’s eight Bundesliga goals have come from penalties – a common league record. Freiburg’s top scorer Grifo also struck five times from the spot.
  • Fürth is nine points behind on safety. No team has ever overturned such a deficit at this stage of a campaign.
  • The Clover Leaves have taken just one point from the last 12 offered and are useless against the first six opponents this season.
  • Petersen – the Bundesliga’s top substitute goalscorer – has scored four goals in seven career appearances for Fürth.
  • Mark Flekken has repelled a league high with 79% of shots on goal this season. The Dutchman made three Bundesliga 2 appearances for Fürth between 2013 and 2016.
  • Streich can claim Freiburg’s record for most Bundesliga wins. He is currently tied with Volker Finke (104).

The probable compositions

Furth: Linde – Meyerhöfer, Griesbeck, Viergever, Itter – Seguin, Christiansen, Tillman – Nielsen – Leweling, Hrgota (c)
Funk (knee), Kehr (knee)
Doubtful: Bauer (dental), Dudziak (Achilles), Ngankam (knee)
Stefan Leitl

Freiburg: Flekken – Schmid, Gulde, N. Schlotterbeck, Günter (c) – Eggestein, Höfler – Sallai, Höler, Grifo – Demirovic
Outside: Keitel (broken toe), Schade (abs)
Doubtful: Kübler (muscular), Jeong (not included), Lienhart (not included)
Coach: Christian Strich