Only a 3 game win streak at the end of last season defied these two clubs from swapping places as Stuttgart narrowly avoided relegation last year whilst Ingolstadt are making their debut in Germany’s top flight. Bundesliga’s latest club has wasted no time in getting itself acquainted with the other clubs as they’ve stormed to 6th in the league. Stuttgart meanwhile have carried last season’s form into the new campaign and are rock bottom with just 4 points from 8 games and are in real danger of relegation.
Although not many people take pre-season into consideration, their emphatic 4-2 victory over Manchester City looked to be the catalyst of a good season but 5 Bundesliga defeats on the bounce said otherwise. They’ve closed the gap on the rest of the pack in recent games with a win over Hannover before just about salvaging a point against Hoffenheim with a 90th minute equaliser that could prove crucial in May ’16.
Despite boasting one of the biggest stadiums in the Bundesliga with a capacity of 60,469 at the MercedesBenz arena, the Stuttgart fans haven’t had much to cheer about with 4 defeats. It is an exact copy of last season’s struggles where they won just once in their opening 12 league games at home and scored in just 3 of those games. They then picked up 14 points from a possible 18 in the remaining couple of months which marginally kept the 5x Bundesliga champions in the league.
It will be the first time in the history of the 2 clubs that they’ve met and that will be said a lot of times this season for Ingolstadt who are enjoying life as a Bundesliga club for the first time. They scored their first ever goal at home in the Bundesliga in their last fixture in a 2-0 win against Eintracht Frankfurt after defeats to Borussia Dortmund (0-4) and Hamburg (0-1) and a draw with Wolfsburg (0-0). Ingolstadt have scored the least amount of goals (6) in the league but 3 of them goals secured 1-0 victories. However, the visitors are also only second to Bayern Munich in terms of goals conceded, shipping just 6 goals in 8 games and 4 of them came in 1 game! Ingolstadt can also boast the second best away record in the league, again 2nd to Bayern Munich with 3 wins and 1 draw in their 4 away matches.
Filip Kostic is a massive absentee for Stuttgart as the midfielder missed his first game of the season against Hoffenheim after picking up an injury in training days before. Robbie Kruse has returned to training after a 4 week calf injury and could be back in the squad. With a relatively small squad, Ingolstadt have been fortunate not to have any major injury concerns with just Almog Cohen still nursing an injury.
Stats: W-1 L-6 D-1
Recent Form - LLLWLD
Stats: W-4 L-2 D-2
Recent Form – DWLDW
No previous meetings.
Stuttgart (4-4-1-1) – Tyton, Klein, Sunjic, Baumgartl, Insua, Ferati, Die, Harnik, Kliment, Didavi, Werner.
Ingolstadt (4-3-3) – Ozcan, Levels, Matip, Hubner, Suttner, Gross, Roger, Christianse, Hinterseer, Hartmann, Leckie.
Injury List/Suspended Players
Stuttgart – Kostic (inj), Langerak (inj)
Ingolstadt– Cohen (inj), Soares (inj)