With 32 rounds played, there are still four teams battling it out for the Europa League berths. Fifth place, which is currently occupied by Borussia Mönchengladbach, is already out of reach for those four clubs. Whereas sixth place guarantees direct qualification for the group stages of the Europa League, seventh place only offers a qualifying berth. TSG Hoffenheim still have a chance of finishing in both sixth and seventh place, as do VfL Wolfsburg, SC Freiburg and Eintracht Frankfurt. VfL Wolfsburg currently find themselves in the best position, with 46 points and a goal difference of +3. Next up are TSG Hoffenheim, also on 46 points but with a -8 goal difference.
6th: VfL Wolfsburg: 46 points, goal difference +3. Remaining matches: FC Schalke 04 (A), FC Bayern Munich (H)
7th TSG Hoffenheim: 46 points, goal difference -8. Remaining matches: 1. FC Union Berlin (H), Borussia Dortmund (A)
8th SC Freiburg: 45 points, goal difference -1. Remaining matches: FC Bayern Munich (A), FC Schalke 04 (H)
9th Eintracht Frankfurt: 41 points, goal difference -2. Remaining matches: 1. FC Cologne (A), SC Paderborn (H)
TSG can qualify for Europe as early as Saturday if…
…Hoffenheim beat Union Berlin and Freiburg simultaneously lose to FC Bayern Munich.
TSG will finish the season in sixth if…
…Hoffenheim win both matches and Wolfsburg pick up no more than four points.
…Hoffenheim amass four points, Wolfsburg pick up no more than three points and Freiburg don't win both games.
…Hoffenheim get three points, Wolfsburg don't win a match and Freiburg don't get more than three points.
…Hoffenheim draw twice, Wolfsburg get a maximum of one point and Freiburg don't win a game.
…Hoffenheim get one point, Wolfsburg lose both matches, Freiburg pick up one point maximum and Frankfurt don't win both matches.
TSG will finish the season in seventh if…
…all four clubs pick up the same number of points.
…Hoffenheim do not amass more points than Wolfsburg but do not pick up fewer points than Freiburg.
…Freiburg win both matches and Hoffenheim pick up more points than Wolfsburg. The only exception is if Hoffenheim get one point and Wolfsburg get zero – but Frankfurt get six.
Possible European dates:
The seventh-placed team would enter the competition in the second qualification round. They would play the first Europa League match on 17 September. Rather than the usual home and away legs, there will simply be one knockout fixture. The third qualification round would then take place on 24 September, with the play-offs to follow on 1 October. The draw for the group stages is set to take place on 2 October, and the dates for the six group fixtures have already been set too: 22 and 29 October, 5 and 26 November, 3 and 10 December.