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  Stuttgart vs Union Berlin preview: Stuttgart Look to Continue Home Dominance Against Struggling Union Berlin

VfB Stuttgart have been one of the surprises of the Bundesliga season so far and are looking increasingly likely to secure a top-four finish and a place in the Champions League. They beat Wolfsburg 3-2 last time out, extending their unbeaten run to six games (5 wins, 1 draw) and stretching their lead over fifth place to seven points.

The hosts boast the third-best home record in the division ahead of this week (9 wins, 2 draws, 1 defeat), while their 35 goals scored in those games is a figure only bettered by Bayern Munich (39). They have also been quick starters, scoring at least twice before half-time in six of their 12 home matches. That early firepower has helped them dominate the first half in front of their own fans all season (HT: 8 wins, 2 draws, 2 defeats).

Union Berlin come into this game on the back of a 2-0 defeat to Borussia Dortmund. That was their 12th league defeat of the season (7 wins, 4 draws, 13 defeats), and it highlights their struggles in front of goal this season – only two Bundesliga teams have scored fewer goals at this stage of the campaign (23), while they have only scored more than once in six league games.

Despite their attacking struggles, Union sit in 14th place, eight points above the relegation zone. They head into this game on the back of a 1-0 win at Hoffenheim, their first away league win since the second matchday (2 draws, 8 defeats). They also kept a clean sheet on their last visit to this stadium last season (1-0), and they are unbeaten in their last four meetings with Stuttgart (1 win, 3 draws).

Key Players: Deniz Undav scored the third goal in Stuttgart’s last home league win (3-1) almost four weeks ago. He also scored in the reverse fixture (3-0), with Stuttgart winning 10 of their last 11 games when he has found the net. Robin Gosens, who was suspended last weekend, is set to return for Union having scored five of his six Bundesliga goals for Union away from home.

Hot stat: Only one team has scored in each of the last four meetings between these two sides, with Stuttgart winning both league and cup encounters in October.

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