Saturday update: Hertha Berlin and Schalke will be relegated, while Stuttgart will be in the relegation playoff. The relegation playoffs will take place June 1 and June 5.
With the 2022-23 Bundesliga season drawing to a close this weekend, Matchday 34 features a tightly contested four-way battle to beat the drop and avoid relegation from Germany’s top flight.
Hertha Berlin’s relegation was confirmed back on Matchday 33, as they conceded a disappointing equalizer in the last minute to draw 1-1 with Bochum. Hertha needed to win both of their last two matchups to keep their hopes of relegation survival alive, but Bochum’s late effort was the final nail in Hertha’s coffin.
Schalke currently sit in 17th place with 31 points and with a 2-2 draw with Eintracht Frankfurt back on Matchday 33, it means they at least need one point on the final day of the season to avoid automatic relegation and potentially a relegation play-off altogether. Schalke face RB Leipzig on the final matchday of the season.
Bochum sit in 16th place with 32 points and if the season were to end today, they would head into a relegation play-off to decide the club’s future in the Bundesliga for next season. A win against Bayer Leverkusen on the final day of the season will surely be enough to avoid automatic relegation, and potentially a play-off matchup as well. Simply put, they need to win out on Saturday.
VfB Stuttgart sit in 15th place with 32 points and is just outside the relegation playoff zone as they head into a regular-season finale against Hoffenheim. A 4-1 win at Mainz last weekend gave the club some much-welcomed cushion heading into Matchday 34. Stuttgart essentially control their own destiny in the race to avoid relegation, with a win on Saturday allowing them to breathe a sigh of relief.
Ausburg are in 14th place is three points clear of automatic relegation, but the same can’t yet be said of avoiding a possible relegation playoff. Given the 15-goal difference between them and 17th-place Schalke, it remains highly unlikely that the latter will catch them. However, they do have to worry about Stuttgart and Bochum, who are just two points behind them in the table. A win at Gladbach is the only means of ensuring relegation survival. Otherwise, they’ll face the third-placed team in Bundesliga 2 in the relegation playoffs.
As it pertains to the new clubs joining the Bundesliga next season, one promotion spot has been secured by Darmstadt following a win over Magdeburg, ending a six-year absence from playing in Germany’s top flight.
From there it will be either Heidenheim or Hamburg joining them in moving up, with the odd club out then set to face the third team from the bottom of the Bundesliga in a playoff for promotion.