While FC Ingolstadt 04 and VfB Stuttgart are both seemingly safe in mid-table at present, neither side can afford to take anything for granted going into the season finale and will therefore go all out for victory when they meet on Saturday afternoon (kick-off 15:30CET/14:30GMT).
Ingolstadt have defied the odds throughout their maiden season in the Bundesliga and come into this match on the back of a four-game unbeaten streak. Just eight points away from the coveted 40-point mark deemed enough to avoid relegation, the dogged Bavarian outfit will once again fight tooth and nail for the points on home turf.
They will come up against a side with a similar mindset in Stuttgart, however. The Swabians were bottom of the standings just before Christmas but have been sensational since the turn of the year, with only FC Bayern München and Borussia Dortmund earning more points so far in 2016. Having put five past TSG 1899 Hoffenheim last week, Jürgen Kramny's charges will be full of confidence.
Goals: 1-0 Didavi (59')
Stuttgart earned a first home win of the 2015/16 season thanks to a hard-fought victory over impressive promoted side Ingolstadt.
Matchday 26 – Match facts
- After Saturday's 1-1 draw at Eintracht Frankfurt, Ingolstadt have now gone four games undefeated in the Bundesliga for the first time in their history.
- Stuttgart have already celebrated more wins in the second half of the season (five) than they managed in the entire first half of the campaign (four).
- Stuttgart's 5-1 rout of TSG 1899 Hoffenheim on Saturday was their ninth win this season, lifting Die Schwaben to 31 points. Stuttgart only managed five more points than that in the whole of last season.
- FCI have collected 32 points to VfB's 31 - no team with 31 or more points after 25 Matchdays has ever been relegated since the three-points-for-a-win era.
- Stuttgart have already scored 18 goals in 2016 - significantly more than league leaders FC Bayern München (13) and Borussia Dortmund (12).
- In the first half of the season Ingolstadt managed only eight points from eight home games. In the second half of the campaign they have already picked up ten points, thanks to three wins and one draw.
- Saturday's match will see the Bundesliga's weakest attack (Ingolstadt, with 19 goals scored) up against the division's worst defence (Stuttgart, with 49 goals conceded).
- FCI have scored 11 of their 19 league goals from set pieces (58 percent). Stuttgart have scored from corners seven times this season - a league high.
Ingolstadt: Özcan - da Costa, Matip, Hübner, Bauer - Roger - Cohen, Christiansen - Hartmann, Lezcano, Leckie
Absentees: Danilo (toe) Levels (ankle), Groß (suspended)
Stuttgart: Tyton - Großkreutz, Schwaab, Niedermeier, Insua - Serey Die - Rupp, Didavi, Gentner, Kostic - Werner
Absentees: Barba (calf), Baumgartl (appendicitis), Ginczek (knee)