Bundesliga: Bayer Leverkusen, Wolfsburg and Borussia Monchengladbach chase last Champions League place
Bayer Leverkusen, Wolfsburg and Borussia Monchengladbach are all in the running for the final Champions League place.
Last Updated: 09/05/14 10:45am
Bayern Munich may have wrapped up the title over six weeks ago, while Borussia Dortmund are certain to be joining them in the Champions League next season, but two out of a potential four sides will be joining them in Europe's elite club competition next season.
Schalke hold the best cards, going into their clash with Nurnberg needing just a draw to secure third place and a berth in the Champions League group stage.
The furthest they can drop is fourth, but only if Bayer Leverkusen beat Werder Bremen.
Any other result for Sascha Lewandowski's side would enable the winner of Wolfsburg's clash at home with Borussia Monchengladbach still to climb above them and enter the play-off for the Champions League in August.
"We may only need a point, but we're still going to go all out for victory," said Schalke's captain Benedikt Howedes.
"We all know what's at stake."
Gladbach arguably have the most to gain this weekend when they travel to the Wolves able to climb two places and turn a berth in the third qualifying round of the Europa League into a place in the Champions League, all going well.
"There are often surprises on the final day of the season," said their coach Lucien Favre. "Anything is possible."
Behind the top five, Mainz will be hoping one of those surprises does not affect them.
They host Hamburg with just a one-point advantage over Augsburg, who have an arguably easier fixture at home to Eintracht Frankfurt and are still harbouring dreams of finishing their best ever season with a place in Europe.
"It's a dream situation," said coach Markus Weinzierl. "We're going to do all we can to put Mainz under pressure."
Mainz will not have it easy against a Hamburg side who currently have an edge over Nurnberg and Eintracht Braunschweig, but for two out of that trio the weekend will end in tears.
Hamburg can ensure they only have tears of joy by beating Mainz while a draw or even defeat could still keep them afloat, or at least in a play-off with the third-placed team in the 2. Bundesliga, just as long as Nurnberg are beaten and Braunschweig do not pick up more than a point at Hoffenheim.
Elsewhere, Bayern will pick up the Bundesliga trophy after their home game against Stuttgart, who secured their top-flight status last weekend, while Hannover host Freiburg and Hertha Berlin entertain Dortmund.