Union to seal crucial home triumph on Saturday afternoon
Union Berlin are missing the injured Sebastian Polter, Michael Parensen and Fabian Schonheim while Marvin Friedrich is absent with suspension.
Heidenheim have no injury concerns. Frank Schmidt can count on a fully fit squad for the clash at Alte Forsterei. However, Kolja Pusch and Maximilian Thiel are both absent due to suspension.
Suspended: Marvin Friedrich
Injured/unavailable: Fabian Schonheim (knee), Sebastian Polter (Achilles), Michael Parensen (unspecified)
Suspended: Kolja Pusch, Maximilian Thiel
MAIN PREDICTION: HOME WIN
Since beating Sandhausen at the end of February, Union Berlin have picked up just six points from the last 18 on offer. In fact, the team have won only one of the last six, with the other matches ending in three draws and two defeats. As a consequence, chances of making it into the top three are now slim. Union registered their third win in 2018 last time out as they beat St. Pauli 1-0 away from home.
Heidenheim produced one of the surprise results of the week at home against Dusseldorf in week 30. They set up with a very defensive-minded 4-4-1-1 formation and did well to frustrate Dusseldorf to gain a 3-1 win. Frank Schmidt’s men had been in poor form before that latest victory, having suffered four straight defeats. They are now in 13thplace and have a disappointing goal difference of -7 while they still hold the worst record of goals against in 2. Bundesliga with 53 conceded. Not many positives come to mind when analysing Heidenheim’s season, but that unexpected win against leaders Dusseldorf may spark a rejuvenated spirit amongst the camp.
This is a massive fixture for both teams for different reasons. As unlikely as it is, Union are still holding out hope of making it into the promotion playoff place while Heidenheim will be desperate to grab a positive result as they are level on points with St Pauli in 16th. However, I believe that home advantage could be the deciding factor on Saturday. I’m backing a Union Berlin win here.
SECOND PREDICTION: ODD/EVEN – ODD
Over 66% of the matches between these two sides have finished with odd total goals, so back the same outcome in Berlin this weekend.
HEAD TO HEAD
Union Berlin and Heidenheim have met on only three occasions at Alte Forsterei, with the hosts winning two and losing one of those matches. However, Heidenheim won the reverse fixture 4-3 at Voith Arena back in November and have in fact won in their last four encounters with Union Berlin, including one friendly.