After being eliminated from the DFB Pokal in midweek, Borussia Mönchengladbach will want to put things right when they host Eintracht Frankfurt, who are one place ahead of them in fifth, in the Bundesliga’s Topspiel on Saturday.
On Tuesday, Gladbach faced Darmstadt in the Pokal and would be eliminated after losing 2-1. Phillip Tietz opened the scoring for Darmstadt before Luca Netz equalised just after half-time but then in the 79th minute, Aaron Seydel would score the winner for the 2. Bundesliga side. It was a classic Gladbach performance against a weaker team where they looked lost in attack and defence. Last weekend, they drew 2-2 with Wolfsburg where they took the lead twice through Marcus Thuram but goals from Yannick Gerhardt and Omar Marmoush cancelled them out each time.
Frankfurt on the other hand knocked out Oberliga Baden Württemberg side Stuttgarter Kickers 2-0 with early goals from Randal Kolo-Muani and Hrvoje Smolcic. Last weekend, they beat Xabi Alonso’s Bayer Leverkusen 5-1 with goals from Kolo-Mauni, Jesper Lindstrom, Daichi Kamada and Lucas Alario.
Daniel Farke’s Gladbach will be going into this game without some of their key players as Yann Sommer and Jonas Hofmann both went off injured during their cup game against Darmstadt. This means the likes of Tobias Sippel and Nathan Ngoumou, who was impressive in the cup, will have to fill in. Arguably the difference maker in this game is Thuram. The Frenchman will be wanting to continue his goalscoring run with a chance to make the France squad for the World Cup.
Similarly, Kolo-Muani (23) will be wanting to make the same claim as Thuram as he has also started the season off strong with three goals and five assists in the Bundesliga. Kolo-Muani has the slight upper hand on Thuram went it comes to the World Cup as he had been called up for the previous international games. Unlike last season, Frankfurt have also been somewhat able to juggle Europe and the league as their chances of qualifying out of their group are still intact while in the league they have bounced back after a slow start.
Last season saw Frankfurt win the opening game 3-2 at Borussia Park after initially going behind, while at the return game in the Deutsche Bank Park they once again came from behind to share the points with Gladbach drawing 1-1.
Sippel – Scally, Friedrich, Elvedi, Bensebaini – Koné, Weigl – Ngoumou, Stindl, Plea – Thuram
Trapp – Dina Embimbe, Tuta, Jakic, NDicka, Lenz – Kamada, Sow – Lindström, Götze – Kolo Muani
GGFN | Jack Meenan