- Leverkusen eye third match unbeaten.
- Ingolstadt the first club to defeat Leipzig last week.
- Hosts eager to close gap on top four.
Bayer 04 Leverkusen will be hoping to sign off for the year with a bang in front of their own fans in their final home game of 2016 when they host FC Ingolstadt 04 on Sunday (kick-off 17:30CET/16:30GMT).
Roger Schmidt's charges have struggled for consistency this season, but are currently on an upward trajectory following a draw with SC Freiburg on Matchday 13 and a last-gasp 1-0 victory away to FC Schalke 04 last weekend. Currently six points adrift of the UEFA Champions League qualifying places, Leverkusen will be eager to chalk up as many points as possible before the winter break to stand them in good stead going into the business end of the campaign.
They will not have things all their own way, however, as Ingolstadt will come into this game buoyed by their 1-0 triumph over a previously unbeaten RB Leipzig side last week. And while Die Schanzer have won just once on the road all season, they have shown a marked improved in the four games under new coach Maik Walpurgis, who has been tasked with steering the club away from the relegation zone.
- Maik Walpurgis has coached Ingolstadt to seven points from four matches, precisely the same tally as Ralph Hasenhüttl in his first four matches in charge of Ingolstadt in the Bundesliga.
- The average age of players who have appeared for Leverkusen this season is 24.4. That’s the second-youngest in the club’s 38-year history in the Bundesliga (after 2008/09, at 24.2).
- Ingolstadt have scored more than half of their goals this season (six of 11) from set pieces, repeating a trend from last season.
- Under Markus Kauczinski, Ingolstadt surrendered 21 goals in ten games (2.1 per match); under Walpurgis just three goals in four (0.75 a game).
- Leverkusen goal-getter Javier 'Chicharito' Hernandez hasn’t scored in his last eight Bundesliga outings.
- Bayer 04's Stefan Kießling scored the first of his 141 career Bundesliga goals in 2004, the same year in which FC Ingolstadt 04 was founded.