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Five Questions Ahead of Bundesliga Matchday 25

Can Marco Rose get the Gladbach ship back on course?

Since announcing his intention to leave Borussia Mönchengladbach in the summer to take the helm at Borussia Dortmund, the wheels have come off the Fohlen’s season with a run of five successive defeats across all competitions. Having qualified for the Champions League last season, a top-six finish looks a pipedream at the moment based on current form.

The fans have turned against the coach and it is just as well that we are playing Geisterspiele right now as the mood inside the Borussia Park would be turning pretty ugly were the supporters to be in attendance.

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The recovery has to start somewhere, and Rose will be hoping it is in the matchday 25 opener on Friday away at FC Augsburg. It won’t be a walk in the park with the Függerstadter looking for the points that would keep them safely above the likes of Köln and Hertha Berlin. If Marco Rose wishes to leave Gladbach with the farewell present of European football next season, things are going to have to change quickly.

Is it now or never for Schalke 04?

If things are worrying for Gladbach, it is close to total despondency over in Gelsenkirchen. Schalke’s demise and shock descent into the 2. Bundesliga is still very much a reality and unless they start picking up the all-important points, they will possibly be playing fellow giants Hamburger SV next season in the second tier.

New trainer Dimitrios Grammozis didn’t get the immediate positive reaction a lot of new coaches get last week in the goalless draw against Mainz and time is very much running out for the Königsblauen.

A trip to Champions League chasing VfL Wolfsburg provides another stern test this weekend and with ten games remaining, they still find themselves nine points behind Arminia Bielefeld, who occupy the play-off berth. Die Wölfe won’t want to drop points as they look to fend of the likes of Eintracht Frankfurt, Bayer Leverkusen, and Borussia Dortmund for the Champions League spot next season.

It will a tough ask, but it really is getting to stage, where it is now or never for Schalke.

Will Robert Lewandowski get closer to the magical 40?

With ten games left this season, Gerd Müller’s magical 40-goal scoring record is still very much in the sights of Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski and the Polish striker will be looking to get even close this weekend as the reigning champions travel to face Werder Bremen at the Weser Stadion.

With seven goals in his last four Bundesliga matches, he is certainly not slowing down as the season enters the final phase and Werder haven’t exactly been watertight at the back of late. Hoffenheim hit them for four on matchday 22, and Lewandowski will want to put at least a couple past Jiri Pavlenka to take him closer to the magical 40 mark.

Are Hertha going to get sucked into the bottom three?

To say that things haven’t exactly gone to plan for Hertha Berlin this season would be a huge understatement. But to say that they are in danger of being sucked into the bottom three, is not something many people would have though imaginable at the start of the campaign.

However, that is the reality with the Alte Dame just two points ahead of Bielefeld, who currently sit 16th. An away trip to the Signal Iduna Park to face Dortmund is not exactly the easiest of tasks meaning it looks a tough ask for Pal Dardai to steer Hertha clear of the drop zone this weekend.

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They did achieve a long-awaited win last week against Augsburg (a first in nine games), but BVB will be a tougher nut to crack as they seek to push themselves back into Champions League contention. The season’s aim was European football at the outset. Now survival looks the season’s immediate goal.

Can Leipzig keep tabs on Bayern?

That we still have a genuine title race in the Bundesliga is most welcome with Bayern having all-but wrapped up the title by this stage in many previous seasons. In a two-horse race however, you need the second horse to keep up the pace and that is the challenge facing RB Leipzig.

Julian Nagelsmann’s challengers face Bayern at home on matchday 27 so will want to still be hot on their coat tails, or even neck-and-neck with their rivals come that clash.

They face Eintracht Frankfurt on Sunday, who themselves have ambitions of Champions League football next season. It promises to be an intriguing encounter, but one which Leipzig need to win in order to keep themselves within touching distance of Bayern. Game on!

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