Bayer Leverkusen vs Werder Bremen: probable teams, match facts and LIVE blog!
After beating Atletico Madrid, can Callum Hudson-Odoi and Moussa Diaby get Bayer Leverkusen back on track domestically when they host Werder Bremen on Saturday (kick-off: 3.30pm CEST)?
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Leverkusen were impressive against Atletico in the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday, but it took two late goals from Robert Andrich and Diaby to beat the Spaniards at the BayArena. Disappointing for Die Werkself, it was only their second victory in nine attempts this season. The other was a 3-0 win at Mainz on Matchday 4, while their only other positive result was last weekend’s 2-2 draw at Hertha Berlin. That leaves Gerardo Seoane’s side second from bottom in the Bundesliga, but the midweek victory will have given the team confidence. Hudson-Odoi has entered straight from his loan from Chelsea, crossing the frontline with Diaby and behind striker Patrik Schick, who – along with Kerem Demirbay – has scored in each of the last two league outings. Jeremie Frimpong will be restored to the side after his assist against Atletico. The question is whether this is a three or four comeback for Bayer, with Adam Hlozek’s place on improvement most at risk.
Joint-third in goals scored this season, Werder had netted at least twice in every game until last week’s 1-0 home defeat to Augsburg – only the promoted’s second defeat of the campaign. It was a setback that could have been avoided had it not been for Marvin Ducksch’s penalty miss in added time. A goal that would have continued a trend of late strikes from Die Grünweißen this campaign. Oliver Burke was key to some of those late feats, with two goals and an assist in just 77 minutes of playing time as a substitute. Despite his impact, the Scotland international has yet to break the leading duo of Ducksch and Niclas Füllkrug. Goalkeeper Jiri Pavlenka left at the start of last weekend and was replaced by Michael Zetterer, but the No1 should be fit to return. Leonardo Bittencourt, however, will miss again with a rib problem.
Look: Highlights from the last time the teams met at the BayArena in January 2021
- Second only to Robert Lewandowski last season with 24 goals, it took Schick until matchday five to score his first goal of the season. He now has two in the bottom two.
- Leverkusen are having their worst start to a season since 1982/83, when they had three points at this stage.
- Die Werkself have lost their first three home games of a Bundesliga season for the first time.
- Füllkrug is tied with Sheraldo Becker at the top of the scoring charts with five goals apiece. He’s never had more than six in the Bundesliga for Bremen.
- Mitchell Weiser has scored three goals in 53 Bundesliga appearances for Leverkusen between 2018 and 2021. He’s been involved in eight goals in 31 competitive games for Werder, including three assists in his six top-flight appearances so far this season.
- Werder are undefeated on the road this season (W2, D2), and in their last three trips to Leverkusen (W1, D2).
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Leverkusen: Hradecky (c) – Frimpong, Tah, Tapsoba, Hincapie – Andrich, Demirbay – Diaby, Hlozek, Hudson-Odoi – Schick
Out: Bellarabi (knee), Lunev (thigh), Palacios (hamstrings), Wirtz (cruciate ligament)
Doubtful: Adli (clavicle)
Coach: Gerard Seoane
Bremen: Pavlenka – Pieper, Veljkovic, Friedl (c) – Weiser, Schmid, Groß, Stage, Jung – Füllkrug, Ducksch
Out: Bittencourt (ribs), Mbom (Achille), Salifou (raveur)
Doubtful: Dinkci (match fitness)
Coach: Ole Werner