Dan-Axel Zagadou could be called up as winless VfB Stuttgart try to stop Sheraldo Becker and Union Berlin on Sunday (kick-off: 7.30pm CEST).
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“[We’ve] shown in the past that we are able to bounce back; it’s part of our DNA,” Stuttgart coach Pellegrino Matarazzo said after last week’s injury-time loss to Wolfsburg. The setback – VfB’s third of the season – means Sunday’s hosts are still looking for a first top-flight victory of the campaign.will be boosted by the return of Borna Sosa for the coming of the top-flight Union, a team that Stuttgart have never beaten in the Bundesliga after four attempts .The Croatian international missed the Matchday 8 loss at the Volkswagen Arena with a cold.Newly signed Zagadou could be in line for a first start to the season in defense after the French defender suffered his firsts minutes in a Stuttgart shirt last weekend. Both Wataru Endo and Hiroki Ito should get rid of their respective shots.
Union coach Urs Fischer hailed his team’s ‘character and mentality’ after the Berliners secured a maiden UEFA Europa League victory on Thursday, despite playing the entire second half against opponent Malmö with ten men after Andras Schafer was sent off. The victory – guaranteed by Becker’s seventh goal in 12 games in all competitions – was the perfect answer to the team’s previous setback against Eintracht Frankfurt, a 2-0 loss which marked the Union’s first defeat of this season. which has been a standout Bundesliga campaign to date. With Becker and USMNT international Jordan in the lead, the Irons were top of the table heading into Matchday 9 and they will be keen to secure a sixth Bundesliga victory at home to Stuttgart this weekend.
Look: Sheraldo Becker under the tactical microscope
- Zagadou has made 68 Bundesliga appearances for Borussia Dortmund.
- Stuttgart has never gone eight Bundesliga days without a win at the start of the season.
- VfB have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last 25 home games in the Bundesliga. Rot-Weiss Essen holds the all-time record here, playing 26 home games without a clean sheet between 1970 and 1974.
- Becker has played a direct role in nine league-leading goals in the Bundesliga in 2022/23 (six of his own, plus three assists).
- Union’s first-ever promotion to the German top flight at the end of 2018/19 was achieved with a two-legged relegation play-off, an away win against Stuttgart.
- Union’s Rani Khedira was on Stuttgart’s books between 2005 and 2014.
Stuttgart: Müller – Mavropanos, Anton, Ito – Führich, Endo (c), Karazor, Ahamada, Sosa – Guirassy, Silas
Out: Vagnoman (foot)
Coach: Pellegrino Matarazzo
Union: Ronnow – Jaeckel, Knoche, Leite – Ryerson, Thorsby, Khedira (c), Haberer, Gießelmann – Becker, Jordan
Out: Möhwald (unspecified)
Doubtful: Baumgartl (not included), Maciejewski (not included)
Coach: Urs Fischer