High-flying Union Berlin will look to stay in touch with the European places when they travel to Werder Bremen on Saturday (2:30pm kick-off, UK time).
The Bundesliga gets back underway this weekend following a short winter pause and both sides have plenty to play for here. After a remarkable start to the season, Union Berlin are sixth and hot on the heels of fifth-placed Borussia Dortmund, while Werder Bremen are down 13th, looking nervously over their shoulders at the relegation battle below them.
Where to watch Werder Bremen vs Union Berlin on TV:
- UK: N/A
- US: ESPN+
How to live stream Werder Bremen vs Union Berlin online:
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Scoreline prediction: Werder Bremen 1-1 Union Berlin
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Werder Bremen vs Union Berlin build-up, previous line-ups & injury news:
Bremen barely avoided relegation to the second tier for the first time since 1980/81 last season as Florian Kohfeldt’s men finished 16th, having to negotiate a playoff match against Heidenheim to preserve their top-flight status.
This season hasn’t been quite as tough so far with Bremen up in 13th, but they remain just four points clear of 16th-placed Arminia Bielefeld after enduring a 10-match winless run prior to their victory over Mainz shortly before the winter break.
Things have been much more comfortable for Union Berlin, however. Enjoying their second season in the top-flight, Urs Fischer’s men are well in the hunt for the European places, sitting just a point behind fifth-placed Borussia Dortmund and three behind Wolfsburg in the fourth and final Champions League spot.
Berlin ran out 2-0 winners the last time these sides met in February, a repeat of that result would send out a statement that they have returned from the festive period ready to overturn the Bundesliga’s aristocracy.
- Werder Bremen (vs Hannover): Pavlenka; Veljkovic, Groß, Moisander; Gebre Selassie, Eggestein, Mbom, Augustinsson; Chong, Sargent, Schmid.
- Union Berlin (vs Paderborn): Karius; Trimmel, Friedrich, Knoche, Lenz; Promel; Becker, Andrich, Teuchert, Endo; Awoniyi.
Milot Rashica and Nick Woltemade are out for Werder Bremen with a thigh injury and illness respectively, while Marco Friedl and David Selke are doubts.
Robert Andrich is free to return to league action after serving a three-match suspension. Max Kruse, Joel Pohjanpalo and Anthony Ujah are all out, however, with Christian Gentner and Keven Schlotterbeck doubts.
Players to watch:
- Werder Bremen: With Kohfeldt wrestling against a number of injury issues among his forwards, the mantle of leading the line for Bremen against Union Berlin will likely fall to Josh Sargent once again. Despite being just 20 years old, Sargent already has five goals in 12 senior caps to his name for the United States national team, however, he has struggled to translate that form to club level, netting just nine times in 58 first-team appearances for Bremen. That said, Sargent did find the net against Hannover in the DFB-Pokal last time out (his third strike in 14 games across all competitions in 2020/21) and with competition growing among the USMNT ranks, he’ll be keen to register back-to-back goals for Werder Bremen for the first time this season.
- Union Berlin: Only Bayern Munich (39) and Bayer Leverkusen (28) have scored more than Union Berlin’s 27 Bundesliga goals this season but with Max Kruse (who has six goals and five assists to his name) likely to miss out here, the goalscoring responsibility should pass to Taiwo Awoniyi. The Nigerian forward, on loan from Liverpool, enjoyed a purple patch of form prior to the winter break, netting four goals in six Bundesliga outings, including the opener in a famous 2-1 win over Borussia Dortmund in Berlin’s last league outing. As tricky as he is clinical, no Berlin player has completed more than Awoniyi’s eight dribbles so far this season and he’ll certainly pose plenty of problems to the Werder Bremen backline in Kruse’s absence.
Bundesliga 2020/21 recent form:
- Werder Bremen: WLLLL
- Union Berlin: WDDLD
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