Union Berlin’s Form Inconsistent Ahead of International Break

Union Berlin's Form
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Recent results show Union Berlin’s form has been inconsistent over the last six matches as the Bundesliga enters the international break. Urs Fischer’s side lost 5-2 on the road on Saturday, and although it was the first defeat in six Bundesliga fixtures, Die Eisernen have picked up nine points from a possible 18 during that run.

Union Berlin’s Form Varied Ahead of International Break

Last Six Games Are a Mixed Bag of Results

Union Berlin headed into the final six Bundesliga games before the international break off the back of the 1-0 defeat away to Mainz at the start of February.

Urs Fischer’s side would have been disappointed with the response, too, struggling to a goalless draw at home against bottom club Schalke. Union had 20 shots on goal during that game but only managed three on target. Although their opponents were limited to just five shots in total, it was a disappointing result for the capital club.

However, Union followed the draw with a win on the road against Freiburg, who occupy a similar spot in the table as Die Eisernen. Like the Schalke game, Union had less possession and more shots on goal but were clinical, while keeping a second successive clean sheet.

Back-to-Back Draws

The win over Freiburg was positive but Union would see their next two results as dropped points. A 1-1 draw at home to Hoffenheim and a goalless draw on the road against Arminia Bielefeld – two clubs at the wrong end of the table – were poor results.

Against Hoffenheim, Union had less shot and less possession but that was reversed against Bielefeld. The way the club have played this season under Fischer is without the ball and try to hit the opposition on the counter, but they struggled to break both of these relegation-threatened teams down.

Expected Results

The final two results as Union Berlin enter the international break were as to be expected. Die Eisernen came from behind to secure a home win over relegation-threatened Köln before losing on the road at fourth-placed Eintracht Frankfurt.

The result against Köln showed character. The result was the first time all season that Union had come from behind to secure all three points. Union have secured draws from losing positions, but to take all three points in what was a must-win game was critical.

However, Union came back down with a bang as they travelled to Frankfurt on Saturday. 4-2 down at half time, Die Eisernen would go on to lose 5-2 against the Europe-chasing side, who are now nine points above the capital club.

Max Kruse Back In the Goals

The return from injury of Max Kruse has been vital. From the aforementioned six games, the former Germany international has scored five of the club’s seven goals.

While Union still picked up points in his absence, his presence on the pitch is crucial and the team look more effective in attack when he plays. Two of the goals may have been from the penalty spot, but his composure from 12-yards is vitally important, as is his positioning in general play.

Union Face Hertha in Berlin Derby After International Break

When Union return to Bundesliga action, they face Berlin rivals, Hertha. Die Alte Dame won the reverse fixture at the Olympiastadion, so Union will be looking to exact revenge. Also, a win for the hosts could see their Berlin rivals drop back into the bottom three.

Union then have a tough run with fixtures, with games against league leaders Bayern Munich, Stuttgart and Borussia Dortmund to come.

Union Berlin Players Away on International Duty During Break

Union Berlin will have six players away during the international break. Captain Christopher Trimmel faces three World Cup qualifiers with Austria, while Marcus Ingvartsen and Julian Ryerson also face three fixtures in the same competition with Denmark and Norway respectively.

Striker Joel Pohjanpalo is also in World Cup qualifier action, but Finland have just two fixtures, while Nico Schlotterbeck and Petar Musa have received U21 call-ups for Germany and Croatia respectively.

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