Hoffenheim and Werder Bremen will be looking to put distance between themselves and the Bundesliga relegation battle when they face off on Sunday (5pm kick-off UK time).
The two sides are currently tied on 23 points, five clear of the relegation play-off place, with Werder Bremen having the slight edge on goal difference and a game in hand.
How to live stream Hoffenheim vs Werder Bremen online:
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Where to watch Hoffenheim vs Werder Bremen on TV:
- UK: BT Sport 2
- US: ESPN+
Scoreline prediction: Hoffenheim 1-1 Werder Bremen
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Hoffenheim vs Werder Bremen build-up, previous line-ups & injury news:
In just the second weekend of the season, Hoffenheim thrashed defending champions Bayern Munich to make it two wins from their opening two games and put the club top of the league. Unfortunately, Hoffenheim’s domestic campaign peaked there, and they have had to deal with a struggle further down the table. Sebastian Hoeneß’s side are winless in their past three league games though they came against Bayern Munich, Eintracht Frankfurt and Borussia Dortmund, and the latter required a late goal to steal a point. Hoffenheim are still in the Europa League and had an exciting 3-3 draw with Molde in midweek, though they may be unhappy having lost a two-goal lead.
For Werder Bremen, this season is going better than 2019/20 when they needed to win the relegation play-off to keep their place in the Bundesliga and reach 40 consecutive campaigns in the top flight (only Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund and Bayer Leverkusen have a longer streak). Bremen are just eight points off the total they managed last season and currently five places clear of the play-off spot with an eye on the top half of the table. Like Hoffenheim, Bremen have won two of their past six Bundesliga games, but they are unbeaten in their past three matches, winning one and drawing two.
- Hoffenheim (vs Molde): Baumann; Adams, Richards, Vogt*; Gacinovic*, Rudy, Samassekou, John; Baumgartlinger; Bebou, Dabbur.
- Werder Bremen (vs Freiburg): Pavlenka; Veljkovic, Friedl, Toprak; Gebre Selassie, Eggestein, Mohwald, Augustinsson; Schmid; Rashica, Sargent.
It might be quicker to name the players Hoffenheim have available to play, such is the chaos in their physios room. The Kraichgauer have no fewer than 12 players either absent or a doubt, including Kevin Vogt who is suspended, top-scorer Andrej Kramaric and Tottenham loanee Ryan Sessegnon. Mijat Gacinovic is a doubt after coming off in the first half against Molde with an injury.
Meanwhile Werder Bremen remain without Patrick Erras and Luca Plogmann, while Marco Friedl is a doubt.
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Players to watch:
- Hoffenheim: With Kramaric a doubt for the weekend, Hoffenheim are going to have to rely on Munas Dabbur to breach the Werder Bremen defence. But that’s not a bad thing. Although the Israeli international has scored just three goals in the Bundesliga this season, one came against Borussia Dortmund last weekend, bringing an end to a 10-game drought in the German top flight. Dabbur then followed that up with two goals in the Europa League, a competition he has really enjoyed, taking his tally there for the season to six. The question is, can he score in three consecutive matches? Hoffenheim need him to.
- Werder Bremen: Hoffenheim have one of the worst defences in the Bundesliga, with only Mainz and Schalke conceding more than them this season, so Bremen may feel confident of getting on the scoresheet. But who’s going to do it? Bremen haven’t been blessed with goalscorers this season, but Davie Selke might be the main man for them. The forward was only a substitute against Freiburg last week after returning from an injury but may come into the starting XI here. He has scored three goals in the Bundesliga so far, with only Leonardo Bittencourt and Niclas Fullkrug (both four) managing more for Bremen. Selke also scored on his last start for Bremen, netting in the 4-1 win over his parent club Hertha Berlin before having to come off injured.
Bundesliga 2020/21 recent form:
- Hoffenheim: DLLWW
- Werder Bremen: DDWLW
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