Strugglers meet, Dortmund face Frankfurt
Stuttgart and Bayern Munich bring the curtain down on Bundesliga football in 2010 with both having endured seasons to forget so far.
Stuttgart are already on to their third coach this season with Bruno Labbadia looking to get it right after Christian Gross and Jens Keller both failed before him.
Bayern have stuck with their double-winning coach Louis van Gaal through thick and thin, yet their current sixth position is far from satisfactory as the midway stage of the campaign approaches.
"We know what situation we are in and that we are obliged to win," said Bayern's director of sport Christian Nerlinger. But it will not be easy, according to Bayern goalkeeper Hans-Jorg Butt, who is worried about Stuttgart's latest change in coach.
"A Labbadia effect is possible," he said. "The team is more motivated because everybody gets a fresh chance to prove themselves. Bruno has proven in the past already that he can breathe life into his teams at the very beginning so we must be warned."
Labbadia will not be putting too much pressure on his side either, saying that the first half of the season "has been messed up" anyway, no matter what the result this weekend. However, a win for Stuttgart would enable league leaders Borussia Dortmund to take another huge step towards the title by beating Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday.
The Westphalians already lead second-placed Bayer Leverkusen by 11 points and are 17 points ahead of Bayern, and following their elimination from the UEFA Europa League yesterday they only have the Bundesliga left to concentrate on.
Bayer will be bidding to make it a two-horse race for the title by beating surprise package Freiburg on Saturday, although third-placed Hannover are not going to rest on their laurels after five wins in a row.
"Of course I want to play in Europe [next season]," declared their coach Mirko Slomka. "And I think we have a chance." Hannover travel to Nurnberg on Saturday while fourth-placed Mainz head to Hamburg, where they play St Pauli.
Hamburg are in action tomorrow night at Borussia Monchengladbach while Werder Bremen host Kaiserslautern and Wolfsburg welcome Hoffenheim to the VW-Arena. Finally, Schalke will look to continue their revival when they host Cologne on Saturday.