Match Day 1
Borussia Mönechengladbach vs. Schalke
Sunday, August 18th 2019
01:30am (GMT+8 Timing)
Last five matches form: L L D W L
Average goals per match (18/19): 1.62
Average goals against per match (18/19): 1.24
Top Scorer (18/19): Alassane Pléa (12)
Last five matches form: L W D D D
Average goals per match (18/19): 1.09
Average goals against per match (18/19): 1.62
Top Scorer (18/19): Daniel Caligiuri (7)
Borussia Mönchengladbach enjoyed a relatively solid campaign last season, but will ultimately have been a little disappointed to miss out on the Champion's League. Their aim for the current season will be to break into that top four. First up it's this home clash with one of the big disappointments last season, Schalke.
Gladbach held the edge in this matchup last season, mastering Schalke 2-0 away and 2-1 in this fixture.
Changes at Gladbach over the summer include the departure of key man Thorgan Hazard. Marcus Thuram being the man brought in to take his position down the left. Stefan Lanier looks solid at right back, whilst, at 22 years of age, new striker Breel Embolo - signed from today's opponents Schalke - still has time to fulfil his undoubted potential.
Schalke don't look to have replaced Embolo, but have strengthened elsewhere, notably in defence with Ozan Kabak coming in, and down the flanks, with much expected of new left winger Benito Raman.
One of the most reliable home sides in the country at the start of last season, Gladbach completely fell to pieces in the second half of the campaign - failing to win any of their final eight games. Improvement will be expected in that regard.
Schalke won only four times on the road last season, but did go unbeaten in their final four games and will be looking to carry on that form into the new season.
Schalke are surely better than they showed last season and we wouldn't be too surprised to see them pick something up here. The greater goal threat offered by Gladbach however just sways us towards a home win.
Prediction: Borussia Mönechengladbach 2 - 1 Schalke
Half time: 0 - 0
Full time: 0 - 0
Shots: 11 - 6
Shots on target: 5 - 2
Corner Kicks: 8 - 3
Possession: 59% - 41%
Florian Neuhaus, Laszlo Benes ad Stefan Lainer were all booked for the home side, with referee Felix Brych also taking the names of Benjamin Stambouli and Daniel Caligiuri of Schalke.
Gladbach were the better side on the stats - coming out ahead in terms of possession and efforts on goal - but then that is probably to be expected as they were the home side. Schalke for their part will likely be more than happy with this result, and their performance - in terms of organisation, if not attacking prowess - was certainly a notch above what they were serving up in the opening stages of the 2018/19 campaign.
Gladbach were exerting more pressure in the early stages, but were struggling to create much in the way of clear cut chances - largely relying on crosses into the area.
It was Schalke who had the first real chance when Benito Raman was played through over the top. The forward was under a little pressure, but will still have been disappointed to only manage to scuff his effort well wide. 0-0 at the interval.
The home side's best chance of the game came in the 55th minute. Schalke losing possession just outside their own area and Alassane Pléa being played in in the right of the area. The frontman's strike beat the keeper but not the left-hand post.
Alexander Nubel was comfortably the busier of the keepers in the remainder of the game, with Yann Sommer barely having a save to make. To Gladbach's frustration though Nubel proved equal to all that was thrown at him, not that the home side ever really threatened to overwhelm the visitors. 0-0 final score.