The second-last weekend of the Bundesliga campaign is upon us and 1. FC Union Berlin will conclude the away programme for 2020/21 at Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday at 15:30.
Urs Fischer's side left Wolfsburg nursing the 0-3 defeat last Saturday with Josip Brekalo's hat-trick consolidating the Wolves' top-four position in the league. The Croatian winger opened the scoring with an excellent strike from range, while Andreas Luthe pulled off a string of top saves to keep Union in the game. Wolfsburg's tight defensive unit and organisation has been key to their great campaign — and this was evident throughout last week's match. At the start of the second half, Union put up a fight and may have felt unfortunate to hit an equaliser. Marcus Ingvartsen wasn't able to shake off a knock and was replaced by Keita Endo at the break. Petar Musa threatened the home defence but Wolfsburg's pair of John Anthony Brooks and Maxence Lacroix did enough to hold firm. As Musa missed a chance to score after 61 minutes, Brekalo fired a second in at the other end with the help of a deflection. With Union pushing forward and committing everything to attack, Wolfsburg put the game beyond doubt late on as Brekalo smashed in from close range.
Hannes Wolf is six games into his stint at the BayArena and the 40-year-old coach has helped stabilise Leverkusen after a rough spell under Peter Bosz. The 2-0 loss to Bayern Munich to one side, Leverkusen have picked up maximum points at home, whilst drawing at Werder Bremen and Hoffenheim. The Werkself are give points better off than Union and have held firm in sixth place, which would guarantee Leverkusen's passage to European football.
"Leverkusen have only lost one of their last five - against Bayern. They will do everything they can to consolidate their current position," said Fischer.
Urs Fischer confirmed at the pre-match press conference that he will need to do without Anthony Ujah, Leon Dajaku, Grischa Prömel, Cedric Teuchert, Jakob Busk and Florian Hübner. Taiwo Awoniyi and Sheraldo Becker have trained and are options for the squad. Robert Andrich has come through full training without any issues.
Saturday's game at the BayArena in Leverkusen will be played behind closed doors.