Eintracht Braunschweig's fight for survival looks doomed

Ronny Hartmann

Die Löwen will need a big boost to stay in the Bundesliga for a second season.

The Hinründe was a tough one for Eintracht Braunschweig. Before the season started, most figured that Die Löwen would be one of the teams relegated from the Bundesliga at the end of the season. While fellow promoted side Hertha Berlin is up in 6th place, Braunschweig is propping up the bottom of the table. However, they are only four points from getting out of the relegation zone.

What Went Right

Daniel Davari

The Iranian international has been Eintracht Braunschweig's best player throughout the Hinründe. Saying that sounds silly when the goalkeeper has conceded 32 goals in the first 17 games of the season. However, the goalkeeper has produced four clean sheets against Hoffenheim, Hannover, Bayer Leverkusen and Wolfsburg. That's not a bad group to pitch shutouts against. If Braunschweig have any hope of of surviving this season, Davari must keep up his current form.

Lower Saxony Derby

Of course, this had to be on the list. After picking up only one point in their first seven matches, Braunschweig marched into the Volkswagen Arena and pulled off a stunning 2-0 upset over Wolfsburg. The victory was important, because it gave the club the confidence that they could compete at a Bundesliga level.

What Went Wrong

Offense

When they were in the 2.Bundesliga, Braunschweig's leading goal scorer was Komi Dumbela. So far this season, whenever Dumbela scores a goal, Wolfsburg has won. Unfortunately for Braunschweig, Dumbela only has two goals. The worse news might be that nobody on the team has scored more goals. Though 17 matches, they've only managed 10 goals. That is a terrible return. If they're going to survive in the Bundesliga for another season, Die Löwen must figure out how to produce more goals.

Defense

Four teams - Hamburg, Nürnberg, Werder Bremen, Hoffenheim - have conceded more goals than Braunschweig in the Hinründe. The bad news is that they still almost allowed two goals per game. While it is possible to remain in the top flight with that goal record, with the offense struggling like it is currently, it's tough to see this being a sustainable model for Braunschweig.

Second Half Preview

I don't see a way that Braunschweig will avoid the drop at the end of the season. They're struggling massively, and they don't have the players available to turn things around in time to save themselves.

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