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"Not many opponents have taken an attacking approach against us this season. But when you play top teams like Gladbach or Dortmund and both teams want to win then it will be an open and attractive game. And I'm expecting one like that against Leipzig on Saturday," said the Dutchman. His expectation is also supported by the stats: The team from Saxony have the best home record in the Bundesliga this season going into matchday 19 with 22 points from nine games – the Werkself have 17 points from nine away games (like Stuttgart) and are only surpassed by league leaders FC Bayern (19 from nine). So strength at home meets strength on the road.
Both teams are currently on course to qualify for the Champions League but the pressure from below is growing ever stronger as Bosz recognises. "A number of teams are fighting for a place in the top four this season. But the most important thing is that we pick up points ourselves. We have to try and get on a good run and win our games. Clocking up points – that's the most important thing."
Against Leipzig, who Bosz believes have better positional play this season compared with recent years, the 57-year-old has to cope with the absence of several players. In addition to the long-term injured Julian Baumgartlinger, who this week underwent a successful cruciate operation, Santiago Arias and Paulinho, Mitchell Weiser and Sven Bender are also sidelined. Nadiem Amiri is not an option due to his Covid-19 infection nor is new signing Jeremie Frimpong, who is currently in self-isolation following his arrival in Germany. And Lars Bender is not yet available – "he hasn't trained with the team as yet and will not be in the squad for the game against Leipzig,"
In contrast, Exequiel Palacios has made further progress in full training over the last two weeks . The coach was unwilling to say whether he would be ready for the weekend. "We have to observe him day by day and also wait for the final training session."
In spite of the number of players sidelined – Bosz does not want to complain about the situation. "If I look round then I can see that other clubs have more players missing," he said. This was on the cards due to the crowded fixture lists in a short space of time and the coronavirus pandemic. "It's extreme but we have to deal with it. And up to now we've done well compensating for the absent players. Therefore, I'm assuming we'll also be able to do that against Leipzig."
Why is healthy eating important? What positive effects can it have on everyday life? And what does a competitive athlete actually eat? These questions and many more were the focus of the latest Bayer 04 event as part of the neighbourhood games days. With a visit to GGS Kerschensteinerschule, Bayer 04 professionals Gustavo Puerta and Verena Wieder kicked off the third campaign match day of this Bundesliga season against VfL Bochum, which will be centred around the Küppersteg district. The duo were supported by nutritionist Lena Kadlec, who organised a workshop with the pupils.Show more
Bayer 04 are through to the quarter-finals of the DFB-Pokal after a 3-1 win over Paderborn in the round of 16. Victor Boniface opened the scoring before Exequiel Palacios doubled up inside the first half hour. Sebastian Klaas got one back for the visitors on 82 minutes, but Patrik Schick restored the two-goal lead a few moments later as Leverkusen extended their unbeaten start to 2023/24 to 21 matches.Show more
The Werkself host Paderborn in the DFB-Pokal round of 16 today, Wednesday 6 December (18:00 CET) at the BayArena. Here’s all the latest information ahead of the cup clash with the Bundesliga 2 club.Show more
The Bundesliga has announced its nominees for November’s Player of the Month, with two Werkself players up for the award in Alejandro Grimaldo and Jeremie Frimpong. Fans can now vote for who they want to win.Show more