Augsburg host Borussia Monchengladbach within the Bundesliga on Friday, with the visitors looking to realize a positive lead to order to maneuver back to the highest 1/2 the table.
The two sides drew 1-1 within the reverse fixture, with Augsburg equalising late on despite having been reduced to 10 men earlier within the last half.
FC Augsburg’s Laszlo Benes celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates on March 6, 2021.
Augsburg suffered a disappointing defeat last weekend at the hands of Hertha Berlin, missing the chance to maneuver 11 points further from their opponents and therefore the relegation zone within the process.
Things looked extremely optimistic for Heiko Herrlich’s side after Laszlo Benes fired them into a second-minute lead with an outstanding first-time volley. Augsburg are very strong at holding onto leads, with their organised defence and threat in transition thriving therein situation.
However, Krzysztof Piatek leveled after the hour mark, before substitute Dodi Lukebakio stole the three points by converting from the penalty spot to supply Hertha with a two-point cushion above Arminia Bielefeld and also the relegation zone.
While relegation looks an unlikely prospect for Augsburg, Herrlich won’t consider his side to be out of the woods just yet on condition that they’re only seven points earlier than Arminia, who have a game in hand against Werder Bremen in the week. The 49-year-old will look to maximize Gladbach’s recent poor run of form to potentially signal another season within the Bundesliga.
Indeed, Gladbach have now taken only 1 point from their last five matches, having also been knocked out of the DFB-Pokal quarter-final by Borussia Dortmund and lost 2-0 reception to Manchester City within the first leg of their Champions League last-16 knockout tie during that timeframe.
In short, it’s been a disastrous period for the club, with the news that manager Marco Rose is ready to depart for Dortmund within the summer clearly having a destabilising impact on results.
Die Fohlen were outplayed by Bayer Leverkusen, a side which they managed to narrowly finish above to qualify for the Champions League last season, last day trip, with Peter Bosz’s side enjoying 58% possession and 13 shots on their thanks to a 1-0 victory via Patrik Schick’s 76th-minute winner.
Augsburg are likely to be without Iago, Alfred Finnbogason, Fredrik Jensen and Tim Civeja because of injury.
Herrlich may look to bring Ruben Vargas into the starting XI to produce more attacking thrust.
Gladbach, meanwhile, will travel Augsburg without Christoph Kramer after the midfielder sustained a ligament injury within the recent cup defeat to Dortmund.
Jonas Hofmann remains sidelined until the tip of the month with a muscular issue, while Famana Quizera contains a shoulder problem.
Prediction:Augsburg – Borussia Monchengladbach x2
Both managers may be content to avoid defeat, with Augsburg moving a point further away from the bottom three and Gladbach jumping back into the top half.