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Oct 3, 2020 at 2.30pm UK at Mercedes-Benz-Arena
StuttgartStuttgart
1-1
B. LeverkusenBayer Leverkusen
Kalajdzic (76')
Kempf (69'), Massimo (75'), Endo (89')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Schick (7')
Bellarabi (75'), Aranguiz (89')

Preview: Stuttgart vs. Bayer Leverkusen - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Bundesliga clash between Stuttgart and Bayer Leverkusen, including predictions and team news.

Stuttgart picked up their first win of the season at the second time of asking, but now face a tougher challenge as they play host to Bayer Leverkusen.

Leverkusen, however, are still yet to claim their first victory of the campaign, having been held in both of their first two encounters, but may feel confident of taking all three points in their clash with newly-promoted Stuttgart.


Match preview

Bayer Leverkusen's Moussa Diaby celebrates scoring against Rangers in the Europa League on August 6, 2020© Reuters

Newly-promoted Stuttgart opened their Bundesliga campaign with a 3-2 defeat at home to Freiburg, going 3-0 down before mounting a late - and ultimately unsuccessful - comeback.

However, they bounced back in style in their second outing, beating Mainz by an emphatic 4-1 scoreline in a hectic game that featured a red card for each side.

The scoreline may have flattered Stuttgart somewhat, though, given the score was 2-1 when Mainz were reduced to 10 men, while Stuttgart's red card came in stoppage time.

Despite that, it is an encouraging three points as Pellegrino Matarazzo's side look ahead to the visit of Leverkusen.

Leverkusen finished fifth last season, boasting the fifth-best attacking and defensive records in the division, and proved themselves a solid side.

However, they have been held to draws in each of their last two league games against Wolfsburg and RB Leipzig, respectively, scoring just once in the process.

Perhaps the departures of last season's top scorer - Kai Havertz - and second-highest scorer - Kevin Volland - have blunted them in the attacking third, with new signing Patrik Schick yet to find his first league goal.

Head coach Peter Bosz will have to address his side's attacking issues swiftly, or risk regressing from last season and slipping out of the European places.

Stuttgart Bundesliga form: LW
Stuttgart form (all competitions): WLW

Bayer Leverkusen Bundesliga form: DD
Bayer Leverkusen form (all competitions): WDD


Team News

Bayer Leverkusen manager Peter Bosz pictured in February 2019© Reuters

Stuttgart manager Matarazzo finds himself in the middle of a selection crisis, with seven players unavailable for the visit of Leverkusen on Saturday.

Philipp Forster, Nicolas Gonzalez, Lilian Egloff, Konstantinos Mavropanos and Clinton Mola are all out, but are expected to return this month.

Maxime Awoudja, however, is not likely to return until December, while Pascal Stenzel is suspended after his late sending-off against Mainz.

Leverkusen head coach Bosz, on the other hand, has just one long-term injury to deal with.

Young Brazilian winger Paulinho is still recovering from an ACL injury and is projected to return in February next year, but will likely be eased in slowly from that point.

Stuttgart possible starting lineup:
Kobel; Kempf, Anton, Kaminski; Endo; Wamangituka, Sosa, Mangala, Castro; Didavi, Kalajdzic

Bayer Leverkusen possible starting lineup:
Hradecky; L. Bender, S. Bender, Tapsoba, Sinkgraven; Aranguiz; Bellarabi, Wirtz, Demirbay, Diaby; Schick


SM words green background

We say: Stuttgart 0-1 Bayer Leverkusen

Leverkusen should have enough quality to edge past their newly-promoted opponents, but given their lack of cutting edge in the final third lately, it could be a low-scoring win.


Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting that both teams will score (BTTS - yes) in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.BTTS Yes:data

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RB Leipzig head coach Julian Nagelsmann pictured on May 27, 2020
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Bayern MunichBayern54102041613
2Wolfsburg541072513
3Borussia DortmundDortmund54011711612
4Bayer LeverkusenB. Leverkusen5311157810
5Mainz 05531162410
6Freiburg52306429
7FC Koln52219728
8Union BerlinUnion Berlin513178-16
9Hertha Berlin5203712-56
10Hoffenheim51228715
11Augsburg512228-65
12RB Leipzig511367-14
13Arminia Bielefeld504135-24
14Stuttgart5113912-34
15Eintracht FrankfurtFrankfurt504158-34
16Borussia MonchengladbachBorussia M'bach511359-44
17VfL BochumVfL Bochum5104413-93
18Greuther Furth5014313-101

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