Form: Strong and steady
Fifty-four points from 27 games puts Wolfsburg third in the league at the moment, with a four-point cushion over Eintracht. In ten matches in the second half of this season, the Green-and-Whites have picked up 25 points – a haul matched only by leaders Bayern Munich. And in their last 11 Bundesliga games, they have drawn and lost just once each (a 2-1 defeat away to TSG Hoffenheim and a 0-0 draw at home to Borussia Mönchengladbach), winning the other nine.
Last weekend, the Wolves saw off 1. FC Köln 1-0, making it three wins in a row after beating Schalke 5-0 and Werder Bremen 2-1. Wolfsburg also have the joint-best defence in the league along with Leipzig, both teams having conceded just 22 goals.
|VfL Wolfsburg 2020/21|
|Stats||15 wins, 9 draws, 3 defeats, 46:22 goal difference, 54 points, 3rd in the table|
|Goalscorers||Weghorst (17), Baku (5), Steffen (5), Brekalo (4), Arnold (3), Bialek (2), Brooks (2), Philipp (2), Gerhardt (1), Lacroix (1), Schlager (1)|
Coach Oliver Glasner almost always plumps for a 4-2-3-1 formation. Kevin Mbabu, Maxence Lacroix and John Anthony Brooks are regulars in the back four, while Jérôme Roussillon made a return to the team against Köln on the left-hand side. Glasner then prefers Maximilian Arnold and Xaver Schlager as his defensive midfielders, with the three more attacking roles being filled against Köln by Josip Brekalo, Ridle Baku and Yannick Gerhardt.
Up front, Wout Weghorst is one of the first names on the team sheet. The Dutchman has found the back of the net 17 times so far this season, meaning that he has scored more than a third of all VfL goals, as well as being the best provider in the side with six assists.
One to watch: Ridle Baku
Baku’s development at Wolfsburg has seen him take his career to international level. The versatile right-footer can play either at right wing or right-back. The 22-year-old has come to encapsulate much of what the Wolves’ playing style is all about, with 882 sprints and 2,287 intensive runs so far this season – top of the table in the Bundesliga in both categories.
Baku’s strong performances for Wolfsburg also earned him a call-up to the Germany U21 squad for the UEFA European Under-21 Championship, where he recently scored two goals and set up the other in a 3-0 win against Hungary.