Battle royale as Wolfsburg, Bayern clash in 'title decider': Frauen-Bundesliga Week 19 Preview
Bayern Munich face a litmus test in their quest to defend the title when they travel to Wolfsburg on Sunday.
The defending champions will be looking to bounce back from a disappointing UEFA Women’s Champions League exit after a 4-3 aggregate defeat to Paris Saint-Germain on Wednesday night. The Bavarians, however, will be buoyed by their 4-0 demolition of SGS Essen in the Bundesliga last weekend.
Wolfsburg, on the other hand, are buoyant after qualifying for the semi-finals of the UEFA Women’s Champions League after eliminating Arsenal on a 3-1 aggregate score line. Die Wölfinnen will also be riding on the morale of demolishing Frankfurt 4-1 in the Bundesliga last weekend.
Bayern Munich lost 1-0 to Wolfsburg in the first leg clash back in November last year.
Bayern may be without 11 players, seven of whom are absent due to Covid-19. Linda Dallmann, Jovana Damnjanović, Franziska Kett, Karólína Lea Vilhjálmsdóttir, Carina Wenninger, Sarah Zadrazil and Maximiliane Rall all tested positive for COVID and were also absent for their champions league second leg clash against PSG on Wednesday.
On the other hand, Laura Benkarth, Ivana Rudelić, Marina Hegering and Maria Luisa Grohs are still nursing long-term injuries.
Bayern fielded only four substitutes in their match against PSG on Wednesday.
Jens Scheuer’s side will be banking on the services of star forward Lea Schuller who, fortunately, is available for them. The 24-year-old is joint-top scorer in the current Frauen-Bundesliga campaign with 13 goals. The German international also scored in their 2-2 UWCL 2nd leg draw with PSG on Wednesday.
Wolfsburg will rely on the services of star midfielder Jill Roord to wade off the Bavarians. The 24-year-old German international is club top scorer with nine goals and also scored in their 2-0 UWCL 2nd leg win over Arsenal on Thursday.
Elsewhere, third-placed Potsdam host eighth-placed FC Köln on Saturday.
Potsdam will be looking to rebound from a nil-all draw with Freiburg last weekend whilst Köln will be also looking to bounce back from a one-all draw with Bayer Leverkusen.
Potsdam are just three points above fourth-placed Hoffenheim and need to secure maximum points to secure champions league participation next year.
The hosts will pin their hopes on star forward Selina Cerci who is joint-top scorer in the current Frauen-Bundesliga campaign with 13 goals.
Fifth-placed Frankfurt will be looking to make it 12 wins in 19 matches when they visit bottom-placed Carl Zeiss Jena on Friday evening.
Smarting from a 4-1 defeat at the hands of Wolfsburg last weekend, the Frankfurt side, who are tied on points with fourth-placed Hoffenheim, will be looking to come back strong and secure third place being just three points behind Potsdam.
The hosts, on the other hand, hurting from a 6-0 drubbing at the hands of Hoffenheim may have to accept relegation fate as the season is left with just four matches.
The visitors will pin their hopes on star forward Laura Freigang who is club top scorer with nine goals.
Fourth-placed Hoffenheim hope to secure UWCL qualification when they travel to seventh-placed Bayer Leverkusen on Sunday.
Buoyant after a 6-0 thumping of Carl Zeiss Jena last weekend, the visitors will be looking to close the three-point gap between them and Potsdam whilst Leverkusen will be looking to rebound from a one-all draw with Köln last weekend.
Hoffenheim will be banking on the exploits of star striker Nicole Billa who is third top scorer in the current Frauen-Bundesliga campaign whilst Bayer Leverkusen will depend on forward Milena Nikolic who is club top scorer with seven goals.
Sixth-placed Freiburg travel to ninth-placed Werder Bremen on Sunday.
The visitors will be looking to bounce back from a disappointing nil-all draw with Potsdam last weekend whilst the hosts will be looking to build on a 1-0 win over SC Sand last weekend.
Freiburg will turn to the industry of striker Hasret Kayikci who is club top scorer with nine goals.
10thplaced SGS Essen travel to 11th placed SC Sand on Sunday.
SC Sand are coming from a 1-0 defeat to Werder Bremen last weekend and can mathematically still escape relegation by winning all their remaining matches.
Essen, on the other hand, will be looking to bounce back from a 4-0 thumping at the hands of Bayern Munich last weekend and are just five points above relegation.
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FIXTURES (Friday): Carl Zeiss Jena vs. Eintracht Frankfurt (19:15)
FIXTURES (Saturday): Turbine Potsdam vs. FC Köln (13:00)
FIXTURES (Sunday): SC Sand vs. SGS Essen (13:00); VfL Wolfsburg vs. Bayern Munich (14:00); Bayer Leverkusen vs. Hoffenheim (16:00); Werder Bremen vs. Freiburg (18:00)
All times are Central European Time (CET)