The big favorites and winners of the past few years from FC Bayern and Borussia Dortmund are already out. The DFB Cup is the terrain of ambitious outsiders this season.
The quarter-finals open this Tuesday (8:45 p.m. / ARD / Sky) 1. FC Union Berlin and FC St. Pauli. The other three games for the semi-finals will then take place on Wednesday evening.
INITIAL SITUATION: As seventh in the Bundesliga table, Union is obviously the favorite against third-placed Hamburg in the second division. Both teams were victorious on the last matchday. Union won 3-1 against Mainz 05, St. Pauli with the same result at FC Ingolstadt. The Iron ended their negative series of three defeats without their own goals. The relief in Köpenick was correspondingly great.
STAFF: At Union, some positions are likely to be rotated. Top scorer Taiwo Awoniyi is about to return to the starting lineup after playing as a substitute against Mainz. Substitute goalkeeper Frederik Rönnow may be allowed to replace regular goalkeeper Andreas Luthe. With the exception of midfield players Keita Endo and Andras Schäfer, who are still suffering, all players are fit.
Pauli trainer Timo Schultz may have to rebuild the defensive. The defenders Leart Paqarada (ankle injury), Philipp Ziereis (thigh) and Adam Dzwigala (adductors), who have been injured since the Ingolstadt game, are questionable.
History: Union is about to reach the second semi-final in the DFB Cup. In 2001 they made it into the final, which they lost 2-0 to Schalke 04. In 1994, Union lost 3-2 at home to FC St. Pauli in the first round of the DFB Cup. Hamburg were in the semi-finals in 2006 and lost 3-0 to eventual cup winners FC Bayern Munich.
CITATION: Coach Urs Fischer: “St. Pauli is a team that is fighting for promotion. They didn’t deserve to beat Borussia Dortmund at home in the cup either. They try to find playful solutions and push the opponent up. They also put in a lot of effort . They are active. It will be a very difficult game for us.”
SPECIAL: Hamburg offensive man Marcel Hartel rose to the Bundesliga with Union in 2019. The friendly, customary at Union, greeting as “football god” by the fans of the iron is safe for him in the stadium at the old Försterei.