Stuttgart - VfB Stuttgart are no strangers to making slow starts to seasons, but head coach Bruno Labbadia has once again managed to get the 2007 Bundesliga champions back on track.

Bruno Labbadia lost his temper after a 2-2 draw with Bayer Leverkusen as "the spreading of untruths" rather than his side's form pushed him to boiling point. Since that rant, it has been his team who have been on fire with just three defeats and a surge into the European reckoning. They end 2012 still in three competitions thanks to excellent DFB Cup and UEFA Europa League form.

shot to fame as the Bundesliga's top goalscorer with 18 goals in 17 matches for Stuttgart's local rivals Hoffenheim at the start of the 2008/09 season. A serious knee injury then stalled the Bosnian striker's career, but he is now firing on all cylinders once again with ten goals in 15 games. Add his two assists into the equation and his value to the side becomes all the clearer.

spent the whole of last season on loan at 1.FC Nuremberg, who were reluctant to let him return after he scored nine goals in 29 appearances. Stuttgart did not want to sell up, however, and insisted on Didavi returning to base. A serious knee injury sidelined him for a lengthy spell, but his pace trickery and penchant for stunning goals are sure to delight Stuttgart fans in 2013.

0 - The number of victories in the UEFA Europa League on home soil. No other qualifier for the last-32 failed to win at least one home game.

28 - The number of games Stuttgart have played so far in the 2012/13 season. Only Hannover 96 (30) have had a more gruelling campaign to date.

"As a Bundesliga coach, I’ve got to ask myself if I follow this path, a tough path which Stuttgart have to go, or do I just say kiss my butt. I’ve got to say that here. The limit has been reached. I can't accept when the coach is being made out to be the village idiot."

Stuttgart coach Bruno Labbadia complaining about misreporting by local journalists after a 2-2 draw with Bayer Leverkusen on Matchday 7.