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Jan 18, 2022 at 5.30pm UK at RheinEnergieStadion
FC Koln
1 - 1
Hamburger SV
Hamburger SV win 4-3 on penalties
Modeste (120+1' pen.)
Hector (43'), Schindler (76'), Hubers (82')
Glatzel (92')
Reis (90'), Walter (105'), Schonlau (120')

Preview: FC Koln vs. Hamburger SV - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: FC Koln vs. Hamburger SV - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Tuesday's DFB-Pokal clash between FC Koln and Hamburger SV, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

FC Koln of the Bundesliga welcome Hamburger SV of the 2.Bundesliga to the RheinEnergieStadion on Tuesday evening, with the two sides looking to reach the quarter-finals of the DFB-Pokal.

The hosts are enduring a hugely-successful campaign in the top flight so far, whilst the visitors are hoping a successful cup run can kick-start their faltering quest for promotion from the second tier.

Match preview

Koln's three-match winning streak in the Bundesliga came to a crashing end on Saturday, with Steffen Baumgart's team easily brushed aside by Bayern Munich on home soil.

The Billy Goats put in a much-improved display during the second half, but after already falling 2-0 behind before half time it was too little too late, and thanks to Robert Lewandowski's hat-trick, they succumbed to a heavy 4-0 loss in the end.

However, the defeat has failed to dampen what has been an excellent start to the campaign under Baumgart, who arrived from SC Paderborn in the summer.

Tuesday's hosts have been overtaken by Eintracht Frankfurt on Sunday, but still remain in an impressive ninth place at this stage, just two points off the European places and with a 10-point gap above Arminia Bielefeld in the relegation playoff spot at the time of writing.

Due to Koln usually finding themselves in the midst of a relegation battle, or a promotion campaign from the 2.Bundesliga, in most recent years, a cup run in the DFB-Pokal has been given little importance.

As a result, should Koln progress to the quarter-finals on Tuesday, it will be the first time they have done so since the 2009-10 campaign.

With little pressure on their league position, Baumgart and his side can fully turn their attentions to the cup in the week, and after being awarded a home tie against lower-league opposition, they will view it as an ideal opportunity to progress further than they have done for many years.

Meanwhile, the visitors do remain in the hunt for their desired promotion back to the Bundesliga at this stage, but Friday's 1-1 draw at Dynamo Dresden was their 10th from their opening 19 league games so far.

With Tim Walter's side only suffering two defeats thanks to their division-leading 19 goals conceded, it has been their clinical edge in front of goal that has prevented them from turning those draws into three points week in week out.

As a result, Hamburg occupy fifth place in the 2.Bundesliga table, outside the automatic promotion places by five points and two points off Heidenheim in the playoff spot as things stand.

Having also drawn at fellow 2.Bundesliga side Nuremberg in the previous round, which required a penalty-shootout victory to progress, there remains a strong possibility that Die Rothosen could play out another draw on Tuesday.

Although Walter and his side could be forgiven for instead focusing on their promotion campaign, this appears unlikely considering the boost a successful cup run could provide in the coming months back in the league.

This was also the case back in 2018-19, when Hamburg finished fourth and missed out on promotion to the top flight, but also managed to achieve a fantastic cup run to reach the semi-finals of the DFB-Pokal at the same time, before they were knocked out by giants RB Leipzig.

FC Koln DFB-Pokal form:
  • D
  • W

FC Koln form (all competitions):
  • D
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L

Hamburger SV DFB-Pokal form:
  • W
  • D

Hamburger SV form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • D
  • D

Team News

Having missed all of December due to injury, Koln's first-choice goalkeeper Timo Horn was all set to return in goal ahead of Marvin Schwabe on Tuesday against Hamburg.

However, after not making the bench against Bayern on Saturday due to a cold, Horn's availability is in doubt, and Schwabe could be set to continue his impressive form in between the posts after all.

Marvin Obuz remains out due to his own bout of illness, but the only other absentee is Ellyes Skhiri, who remains on international duty at the Africa Cup of Nations.

As for the visitors, Stephan Ambrosius, Josha Vagnoman, Maximilian Rohr and Anssi Suhonen are all not expected to return until the end of January at the earliest.

Long-term absentees Tim Leibold and Felix Paschke remain out until the end of the season as well.

After regaining his place in goal on Friday, Daniel Heuer Fernandes looks set to remain in between the posts ahead of Marko Johansson.

FC Koln possible starting lineup:
T Horn; Schmitz, Kilian, Hubers, Hector; Ozcan; Kainz, Duda, Ljubicic; Andersson, Modeste

Hamburger SV possible starting lineup:
Fernandes; Heyer, David, Schonlau, Gyamerah; Reis, Meffert, Kinsombi; Alidou, Glatzel, Kittel

We say: FC Koln 2-0 Hamburger SV

With Koln able to fully focus on this cup tie without any concerns over fitness issues and fixture congestion in the league, we expect them to put out a strong side and look to progress in the cup on Tuesday.

As a result, they should possess too much quality for their second-tier opponents in this one, although with both sides being defensively organised, we would not expect too many goals.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:curl

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4RB Leipzig341771072373558
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RGreuther Furth3439222882-5418
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