Bundesliga Second Division Preview
Grünwalder Strasse, Munich - Euphoria is starting to spread into the TSV 1860 München fanbase after the Lions' recent four consecutive wins in all competitions, which did not only bring points, but also delight to the fans with a very spectacular way of playing.
Thoughts of a promotion to the top flight does not seem to be a taboo anymore, as it was in the last seasons.
TSV's ambitions will be tested on Friday (kick off at 18:00) by Fortuna Düsseldorf, as the club from North-Rhine Westphalia will host the Bavarians. Fortuna are a team that also hope to get to Bundesliga. They have proved to be unbeatable at home, as they have not lost for the last 16 games (15 wins, 1 draw). And if they should be able to stop 1860 Munich as well, they would equal the record they established in 2009-2010, when Düsseldorf managed to remain unbeaten in the Esprit Arena for 17 games.
Those numbers are impressive, but the current form of the Lions allow them to think positive. While meeting with the media Thursday, Munich's head coach Reiner Maurer proved to be worried about the game. He praised his opponent's major factors. "Fortuna are extremely strong at home. They have been playing with the same eleven for a very long time, that is of course a huge advantage. I think they belong with teams who will fight for the promotion."
Maurer updated his team's lineup, pointing out that all the long-term injured (Necat Aygün, Stefan Buck and Collin Benjamin) will still not be available. Also Daniel Bierofka is questionable at the moment. "Unfortunately I still do not know if he can make it. It would be a pity if he should not be able to recover," stated Maurer.
That is the big difference with Fortuna in Maurer's opinion. The Lions have not had the chance to go on the field with the same starting eleven because of the many injuries. "We suffered a lot of injuries. That prevented us from developing as a well-rehearsed team, something Fortuna has managed to do."
Maurer will approach the away game with caution. He knows that his team is having a good time, but at the same time he cannot omit to consider their opponent's strength. This game represents an important test in order to understand TSVs potential. If they manage to get a win in Westphalia, the chase for a promotion spot will officially begin and no one at 1860 will have the chance to deny it.
Derby time in Fürth - Day 5 of the German Bundesliga second division will offer a tasty Bavarian Derby. SpVgg Greuther will host FC Ingolstadt, kick off 18:00. Looking at the table, this should be a one-way game. The hosts shockingly lost their first game, but since then they have won all their matches, while Ingolstadt have not yet tasted victory. Derbies are special games, anything can happen. Will Ingolstadt be able to confirm it?
Simone Sperduto contributed to this article.