- Tayfun Korkut seeks Leverkusen's flux capacitor.
- Niko Kovac hoping to steer Eintracht ark to safe waters.
- Hertha lay down doormat for guests Dortmund.
With a faint scent of spring in the air, 'tis almost the season for several Bundesliga tacticians to tidy up their first-team affairs, and after our statistical sponge soaked up this week's key details, we hereby squeeze them out for your delectation.
bundesliga.com takes a closer look at the defining digits going into this weekend's fixtures.
What better place to start for our pre-spring clean than at Bayer Leverkusen, where Tayfun Korkut has swept in to take over from the dismissed Roger Schmidt. After rolling up his sleeves, the former Turkey international may opt to apply a little polish to Leverkusen's dusty defence. Bayer's goals-against figures have risen to levels unseen since Boris Becker was blossoming at Wimbledon and Marty McFly was manning a DeLorean. B04 haven't shipped as many goals – 38 in 23 games – since the 1984/85 campaign while 30 points is their worst return at this stage of a season for 14 years. "We're convinced he can lift the players' spirits," Leverkusen's sporting director Rudi Völler said of coach Korkut, who will quickly look to have his new team dazzling when they face Werder Bremen under the Friday night lights.
Watch: Leverkusen undone by deadly Borussia Dortmund:
Niko Kovac will be just as keen to freshen up his Eintracht Frankfurt frigate, which has begun to list after an alarming losing sequence. Once confidently sailing the Hinrunde high seas, Eintracht's ark has since struggled, succumbing to four straight losses that have pushed Kovac & Co. slightly off course and into the path of a brutal Bavarian storm. The weather warning appears grim for Frankfurt fans, who haven't witnessed a win against weekend opponents Bayern Munich in the sides' last eleven games, with eight of those being defeats.
Watch: Frankfurt's MD23 tormentor Florian Niederlechner tells of important win:
And for the Eagles' faithful praying the Bundesliga leaders will be weary following their mid-week UEFA Champions League commitments, a recent history lesson won't help. Bayern haven't lost a domestic game immediately after a Champions League encounter in the past two seasons. Yet with the teams playing out a 2-2 draw in the corresponding game this term, the crew aboard the good ship Eintracht will be emboldened to challenge for a first points-accruing double against Bayern since 1995/96.
The perspective through Wolfsburg's smudged windows a little unclear of late, visual enhancement technician Andries Jonker has re-joined forces with janitor Mario Gomez to generate a more vibrant vista at the Wolves. Legendary German goal-getter Gomez scored as recently appointed Wolfsburg coach Jonker oversaw last weekend’s 1-1 draw against Mainz, meaning a previously successful partnership stretching back six years was once again cemented.
Watch: Mario Gomez calls for Wolfsburg improvements following Mainz draw:
During the Dutch tactician's five games in temporary charge of Bayern in 2011 (W4 D1), Gomez scored at least a goal in every one of them and the forward took his tally to ten in six matches in tandem with Jonker against the 05ers. The deadly duo must now rid Wolfsburg of the unpleasant odour of relegation emanating from the team's worst-ever Bundesliga run. Despite collecting more points this season away from the Volkswagen Arena (12) than in it (11), Wolfsburg’'s trip to second-placed RB Leipzig appears nonetheless daunting against opponents who have won nine of eleven at home.
Pal Dardai's Hertha Berlin have been hoovering up the points at their pristine Olympiastadion abode with the Bundesliga's fifth-placed team even boasting the best domestic record of the campaign to date. Hertha's proud homeowners may begin to grimace when they see Borussia Dortmund coming up the driveway this weekend, however.
Thomas Tuchel's young team tend delight in tampering with BSC's in-house circuitry to such an extent that this week's hosts succeeded in scoring just once in their last six home games against Die Schwarzgelben in all competitions.
Vedad Ibisevic seems particularly agitated by Dortmund's antics, the striker not having found the net against them in his last eight attempts. Ibisevic would willingly counter that counterpart Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has never scored against Hertha in his three games at the Berliners' home, meaning there is plenty for Saturday's protagonists to put right.
More numbers next week!