As VfB Stuttgart heads to Volksparkstadion for the second leg of the Bundesliga relegation playoff against Hamburger SV, they carry a significant advantage with them. The potential for Hamburg’s desperation to instigate a comeback might result in vulnerabilities in their defense, and Stuttgart has the offensive prowess to capitalize on this.
Hamburg faces a daunting challenge on Monday, following a 3-0 loss in the initial matchup last week. Stuttgart’s early goal dictated the match’s dynamic, with Tim Walter’s team largely controlling the game. Goalkeeper Daniel Heuer-Fernandes’ actions mitigated what could have been an even more unfavorable outcome for Hamburg.
This was Hamburg’s first loss in five games, a period in which they secured three victories. They’ll hope to channel the momentum of these previous wins but now need a minimum of three goals to possibly reclaim their place in the German premier league.
One positive aspect for Hamburg is their return to Volksparkstadion, a venue that has witnessed high-scoring victories like the 6-1 win over Hannover 96 and a 4-3 triumph over St Pauli. However, the aggressive offensive strategy required to recover from a three-goal deficit on Monday may further expose their defense, considering they haven’t kept a clean sheet in their last five home games.
Stuttgart, despite a challenging Bundesliga season, is just a single match away from securing their premier league status. Their triumph in the first leg, thanks to goals from Konstantinos Mavropanos, Joshua Vagnoman, and Serhou Guirassy, places them in a commanding position.
The previous result means Stuttgart remains undefeated in their last four games, with two wins. Heading into Monday’s match, Sebastian Hoeneß’s team will feel no pressure, aware they can leverage Hamburg’s likely defensive gaps.
Stuttgart’s recent away performances should also boost their confidence, as they have scored three victories and a draw in their last five away games. Although they emerged as 4-1 victors in their last away match, they have managed just one clean sheet in their last 13 away matches across all competitions.