Stuttgart vs Union Berlin
German Bundesliga Play-offs
Date: Thursday, 23 May 2019
Kick-Off 19:30 UK / 20:30 CET
Venue: Mercedes-Benz-Arena (Stuttgart).
A real buzz is expected in and around Mercedes-Benz-Arena on Thursday evening when Stuttgart and Union Berlin are set to battle it out in the first leg of their promotion/relegation play-offs tie. With the appearance in the elite tier of German football on the line, we can expect a huge tension both on and off the pitch.
This will be the 11th season since the introduction of the play-offs. Bundesliga teams retained their status on as many as eight occasions and we thus have to see Stuttgart as favourites both on the night and over two legs.
Die Schwaben were just two points adrift of the European football this time last year. They are now forced into their first play-offs. The host have reasons to be optimistic ahead of this visit of Union Berlin. Stuttgart won each of last two home outings in the league without conceding a single goal in the process. They also kept their net untouched last weekend in a goalless draw away at Schalke. We can thus say the interim manager Nico Willig has significantly improved team’s defensive efforts. Can Die Schwaben keep things quiet at the back here against Die Eisernen?
Stuttgart vs Union Berlin: Head-to-head
These two sides played together in the 2016/17 edition of 2. Bundesliga.
Stuttgart took four points back then (a 1-1 draw on the road and a 3-1 victory at home).
Stuttgart vs Union Berlin: Prediction
Union Berlin missed a huge opportunity to overtake Paderborn at the second place and earn the automatic promotion to the elite tier. They came back from two behind away at ten-man Bochum on Sunday, but no strength to complete a comeback as they finished the season level on points with Paderborn (failed to qualify just on goal difference).
Die Eisernen did struggle badly to perform on travels this season. They won only 3 of 17 away games in 2. Bundesliga netting just 20 goals in the process. Stuttgart have seriously improved their defensive showings of late and they saw off the likes of Borussia Monchengladbach (1-0) and Wolfsburg (3-0) in last two home matched of the season.
We will thus go for the home win as the main betting option at the odds of 1.75.
Stuttgart vs Union Berlin: Bet Tips
Stuttgart to win @ 1.75 (3/4)
Stuttgart to keep a clean sheet @ 2.25 (5/4).