1. FC Union Berlin make the trip to Hamburg on Saturday (14.04.2018, 13:00) to take on FC St Pauli at the Millerntor Stadium.
2.Bundesliga as close as never before
Just four points separates fourth position and 15th spot in the German second division with five matches left to play on the calendar. In their last outing a week ago, St Pauli went down 2-1 against Erzgebirge Aue, ending a run of three consecutive draws. The club from Hamburg, coached by Markus Kauczinski, occupy 15th – three points ahead of 16th Heidenheim and five ahead of Darmstadt, who are in the second automatic relegation position.
Meanwhile, Andre Hofschneider’s team held on to a point at the Stadion An der Alten Försterei last weekend against MSV Duisburg. The Köpenick side have a positive goal difference (+6) but are one of five clubs – Pauli, Greuther Fürth, Dynamo Dresden and Eintracht Braunschweig are the others - bunched together on the same total of 37 points from 29 matches.
"Many teams are happy when they come to us and many are also happy when they drive to St. Pauli. When these two teams then play against each other, of course it’s something special. That's why I think it can be a great motivation to just look forward to such a game," said head coach Hofschneider at the pre-match media briefing. "St. Pauli is in a similar predicament to us. They haven't had resounding successes in the last few weeks, so they're going to throw everything into the mix in this game. It will certainly be a very fast-paced, aggressive and emotional game in which we have to hold out and successfully implement our style of play."
Fewer injury problems, Gogia is back in training
There has been some good news on the fitness front for Hofschneider this week, following Akaki Gogia’s return to full training. According to the Union Berlin coach, he has coped well with the intensity over the last few days and could be in contention for a starting spot on Saturday. Defender Michael Parensen has made his first steps towards an end-of-season recovery, but Fabian Schönheim and Sebastian Polter remain out with long-term injuries.
Away block sold out – important info
If supporters of 1. FC Union Berlin have purchased tickets for the home end, FC St Pauli has explicitly warned supporters that Union colours are forbidden. The same applies when carrying other items, such as scarves, banners or flags, which are also strictly prohibited from the home section of the ground.