Molde face Hoffenheim in Europa League action at the Estadio de la Ceramica in Villarreal, Molde’s temporary “home” due to lockdown restrictions in Norway.The MFK will feel disadvantaged by being unable to play at Aker Stadion, their home turf. However, they can rely on their hot streak right now, having won their last four games on the spin.This is also the furthest the former Norwegian champions have progressed in their history, having also made it to the last 32 of the competition back in 2016.Molde will hope to go one better this year and Hoffenheim’s recent record will only bolster the Norwegian team’s confidence.With just two wins from eight games since the turn of the year, Die Kraichgauer are going through a rough patch, putting manager Sebastian Hoeness under pressure.They even contrived to lose 4-0 to bottom side Schalke in the league, a testament to how much the German outfit have fallen. However, the recent draw with Borussia Dortmund gave them some relief.Molde vs Hoffenheim Head-To-HeadThis will be the first-ever competitive meeting between the sides.
Molde Form Guide (all competitions): L-W-W-W-WHoffenheim Form Guide (all competitions): W-W-L-L-DMolde vs Hoffenheim Team NewsMoldeOla Brynhildsen is the only long-term absentee as the winger fractured his leg earlier this month. He will miss up to two months of action.Injured: Ola BrynhildsenSuspended: NoneUnavailable: NoneHoffenheimThe visitors are currently facing an injury crisis with eight players out injured. The list includes star striker Andrej Kramaric, who sustained a knock to his ankle at the weekend and will have to sit this one out.Injured: Benjamin Hubner, Konstantinos Stafylidis, Ermin Bicakcic, Dennis Geiger, Kevin Akpoguma, Havard Nordtveit, Andrej Kramaric, and Chris Richards.Suspended: NoneUnavailable: NoneMolde vs Hoffenheim Predicted XIMolde (4-3-3): Andreas Linde; Kristoffer Haraldseid, Stian Gregersen, Martin Ellingsen, Birk Risa; Etzaz Hussain, Fredrik Aursnes, Magnus Wolff Eikrem; Mathis Bolly, Bjorn Sigurdarson, Eirik Andersen.Hoffenheim (5-3-2): Oliver Baumann; Pavel Kaderabek, Stefan Posch, Florian Grillitsch, Kevin Vogt, Marco John; Sebastian Rudy, Diadie Samassekou, Christoph Baumgartner; Ihlas Bebou, Munas Dabbur.Molde vs Hoffenheim Prediction
Hoffenheim are obviously a quality side with some good attacking stars up their sleeves. That should count in their favor in a game that is not a true home match for Molde. We expect Hoffenheim to eke out a much-needed win here.Prediction: Molde 1-2 Hoffenheim
Published 16 Feb 2021, 12:36 IST