Hoffenheim vs RB Leipzig Preview: How to Watch on TV, Live Stream, Kick Off Time & Team News

Hoffenheim players celebrate
Hoffenheim players celebrate | RONALD WITTEK / POOL/Getty Images

When it comes to the battle of the 'nouveau riche' Bundesliga clubs between Hoffenheim and RB Leipzig, a few cynical German neutrals might say that whoever wins, we all lose.

The relatively new kids on the Bundesliga block have far bigger and better things to worry about, however, with European places at stake for two sides hoping to bounce back from disappointing results last weekend.

Leipzig were disappointing against Paderborn on Saturday
Leipzig were disappointing against Paderborn on Saturday | INA FASSBENDER/Getty Images

Leipzig have had to deal with the speculation surrounding star forward Timo Werner's future and the ignominy of a comprehensive head-loss against basement boys Paderborn, with Champions League qualification now more a probability rather than the dead-cert it was a couple of weeks ago.

Hoffenheim, meanwhile, have been in decent form since the restart, and the emergence of precocious youngster Christoph Baumgartner has come in tandem with a push for a Europa League place.

Where to Watch

When Is Kick Off? Friday 12 June
What Time Is Kick Off? 19:30 (BST)
Where Is it Played? Prezero Arena
TV Channel/Live Stream? BT Sport 1 (UK), FuboTV (US)
Referee? TBC

Team News

Both sides will be contending with various injuries and suspensions on Friday night.

Hoffenheim's Benjamin Hübner, who was sent off against Fortuna Dusseldorf at the weekend, is suspended and will join a host of players in sitting this one out.

Jacob Bruun Larsen has a groin injury, while Ishak Belfodil and Sargis Adamyan are absent with respective long-term knee and ankle complaints. Konstantinos Stafylidis, still recovering from a May muscular injury, will also miss out.

UEFA Champions League"Red Bull Leipzig v Tottenham Hotspur FC"
Sabitzer will be a huge miss for Leipzig | ANP Sport/Getty Images

Dayot Upamecano misses out through suspension for Leipzig following his red card in the draw with Paderborn. Key man Marcel Sabitzer also has a muscular injury, while Yussuf Poulsen is not expected back for a few months as he recovers from an ankle injury.

Chelsea loanee Ethan Ampadu is slowly returning to fitness after a back injury, but Friday will likely be too soon for him.

Predicted Lineups

Hoffenheim: Baumann; Kadeřábek, Posch, Bičakčić, Zuber; Rudy, Grillitsch; Skov, Baumgartner, Bebou; Dabbur.

RB Leipzig: Gulácsi; Mukiele, Klostermann, Halstenberg, Angeliño; Kampl, Laimer; Olmo, Nkunku; Schick, Werner.

Head to Head Record

Unsurprisingly, given that Hoffenheim got their start in the Bundesliga in 2008, and RB Leipzig started literally playing football just a year after that, meetings between the two clubs have been few and far between.

This is only the ninth encounter between the two sides, with RB Leipzig winning four, Hoffenheim winning two, and the points shared on two other occasions.

Nagelsmann previously took Hoffenheim into the Champions League
Nagelsmann previously took Hoffenheim into the Champions League | HANNIBAL HANSCHKE/Getty Images

In more recent history (although it all is recent really, given the first time they met was in 2016), Leipzig are unbeaten in four matches against Friday's opponents, with the previous match between the two seeing a Timo Werner brace secure a 3-1 win in Leipzig.

Most interestingly, in their respective short histories, the clubs have shared two iconic managerial figures in Ralf Rangnick and Julian Nagelsmann, making this the Derby of the Somewhat Nerdy Managers.

Recent Form

Hoffenheim have been in perfectly OK nick since the Bundesliga restarted - they are unbeaten in four games, having won two and drawn two.

It might seem like a pretty humble series of results from an outsider's perspective, but before the league went on hold Hoffenheim had failed to register a victory in five league games, a run which included a chastening 6-0 home defeat against Bayern Munich.

Patrick Schick
Despite a good season for Patrik Schick, Leipzig have struggled at times in front of goal | DeFodi Images/Getty Images

Leipzig will be furious that they haven't got more points out of a fairly tame run of fixtures, where some freakish bad luck in front of goal and a few head-gone moments have cost them points.

They have drawn three and won two of their last five, but against Augsburg they somehow couldn't find a game-deciding goal despite registering 22 shots.

The draw against Paderborn was the scene of the aforementioned petulance from Upamecano, while some separate idiocy from Marcel Halstenberg against Hertha Berlin reduced Leipzig to ten players as they dropped points yet again.

Here's how both sides have got on recently.

Hoffenheim

Fortuna Dusseldorf 2-2 Hoffenheim (6/6)
Mainz 0-1 Hoffenheim (30/5)
Hoffenheim 3-1 Koln (27/5)
Paderborn 1-1 Hoffenheim (23/5)
Hoffenheim 0-3 Hertha Berlin (16/5)

RB Leipzig

RB Leipzig 1-1 Paderborn (6/6)
FC Koln 2-4 RB Leipzig (1/6)
RB Leipzig 2-2 Hertha Berlin (27/5)
Mainz 0-5 RB Leipzig (24/5)
RB Leipzig 1-1 Freiburg (16/5)

Prediction

It has to click at some point for Leipzig, who've looked like one of the best sides in the league in almost every single department, except two of the most important ones - forwards scoring goals and defenders not getting sent off.

However, the game against a Hoffenheim side who've looked competent without being spectacular might be the perfect opportunity to pick up some good form ahead of the final few games.

FBL-GER-BUNDESLIGA-DUESSELDORF-HOFFENHEIM
Ihlas Bebou has four goals for Hoffenheim this season | MARIUS BECKER/Getty Images

Hoffenheim, who are still fighting with Freiburg, Wolfsburg and Hertha Berlin for a European spot, won't make it easy for Leipzig in Baden-Württemberg.

But it's time for Werner to step it up in what might be his last opportunity to claim the Bundesliga Golden Boot for some time. Just the five goals to make up on Robert Lewandowski, Timo!

Prediction: Hoffenheim 1-3 RB Leipzig