Gelsenkirchen - Two sides with genuine designs on a place in next season's UEFA Champions League get Matchday 20 underway as FC Schalke welcome Borussia Mönchengladbach to the Veltins Arena on Friday (kick-off 19:30 GMT / 20:30 CET).

bundesliga.com looks ahead to the tantalising contest that pits sixth up against third...

The battle for a place in the top four looks like it might go right to the wire after FC Augsburg, Bayer 04 Leverkusen and Gladbach all picked up wins on Matchday 19. The Royal Blues slipped to sixth after taking a point off FC Bayern München, but still only trail Friday's visitors by two points.

With Ralf Fährmann and Fabian Giefer ruled out, 19-year-old goalkeeper , who debuted in Munich, will start. Sidney Sam looks set to continue in place of Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (suspended), but Marco Höger and Jan Kirchhoff face late fitness tests, while Sead Kolasinac is not yet fit enough.

Austrian defender misses out after taking a blow to the head in the midweek win over SC Freiburg. Alvaro Dominguez will most likely come in at the heart of defence and Ibrahima Traore could feature after returning from international duty. However, the game comes too soon for former Augsburg winger Andre Hahn (Achilles).

Benedikt Höwedes' leadership skills continue to serve the Royal Blues exceptionally well after the World Cup winner scored the equalising goal against Bayern. The Schalke skipper has struck up a great understanding with Manchester City FC loanee Matija Nastasic and can be expected to put in another vocal display here.

The Foals' perfect start to 2015 owes much to Patrick Herrmann, who followed up his match-winning strike away at VfB Stuttgart with the decisive goal against Freiburg. The pacy winger was involved in almost every Gladbach attack in midweek and, on another day, might have had a hat-trick.

Roberto Di Matteo (Schalke head coach): "Gladbach are a team that don't give much away. I'm expecting a game with very few chances."

Lucien Favre (Gladbach head coach): "Schalke have a very good team that are incredibly well organised [...] We have to have options."

Schalke are unbeaten this year after edging out Hannover 96 and drawing with Bayern. Their last defeat came on home soil, though - against 1. FC Köln on Matchday 15. Gladbach are one of three sides to have enjoyed a 100-per-cent winning start to 2015, but have won just three times away from home in the league this season.

Hahn, Max Kruse and Raffael were on the scoresheet as Gladbach extended their winning run against Schalke to three matches earlier in the campaign. The Royal Blues went down 1-0 in last season's corresponding fixture, with their last home win over Lucien Favre's men coming back in August 2011.

Possible line-ups:

Schalke: Wellenreuther - Uchida, Höwedes, Matip, Nastasic, Fuchs - Neustädter - Barnetta, Meyer - Sam, Choupo-Moting

Gladbach: Sommer - Korb, Jantschke, Alvaro Dominguez, Wendt - Kramer, Xhaka - Herrmann, Hazard - Raffael - M. Kruse

Click here to find your local broadcaster for this match