Niklas Lomb is a 28-year-old goalkeeper for Bayer 04 Leverkusen. Lomb was born on July 28, 1993 in Cologne, Germany, and spent his youth career playing for SC West Köln before joining Leverkusen’s youth academy in 2008. He made his professional debut for the club in a UEFA Europa League draw against Rosenborg on December 6, 2012. During the first half of the 2014-15 season, he was Leverkusen’s 3rd goalkeeper, although he didn’t make any appearances. He was then loaned out to Hallescher FC for the remainder of the season, before being loaned out to Preußen Münster from 2015 to 2016 and SV Sandhausen from 2018 to 2019. He last renewed his contract with Leverkusen in 2020, where he has made a total of 67 appearances.
VfB Stuttgart climbed out of the relegation zone on Friday with a 2:1 victory over visitors 1. FSV Mainz 05. The hosts got on the board first when Hiroki Ito converted a touch from Orel Mangala in the 21st minute. Mainz tied the match in the 39th minute with a goal from Alexander Hack off a corner from Jean-Paul Boetius, but the winning goal came in the 51st minute when Borna Sosa smashed the ball into the roof of the net. Ito’s goal was his first for Stuttgart, while Sosa’s appearance on the scoresheet was his first time in the 1. Bundesliga. Competition for spots at the top of the table resumes on Saturday when Dortmund travel to Wolfsburg. Dortmund striker Erling Haaland has now returned to the squad, but is only expected to make a short appearance as his recovery from a hip flexor injury continues. The scoring for Dortmund has been spread evenly in Haaland’s absence, including a last-minute goal from Marco Reus in the recent 2:1 victory over Stuttgart. Wolfsburg have lost their last 6 matches against Dortmund, and Dortmund are the only current Bundesliga team that Wolfsburg striker Wout Weghorst has not scored against. Later on Saturday, Bayern will host Bielefeld, as Lewandowski continues his scoring streak. Bayern are coming off a stunning 2:1 loss to Augsburg last week, and could already be momentarily behind Dortmund in the table when the match begins. Although Bielefeld are unbeaten in their last 2 games, they are still in the relegation zone in the table, just 1 point off the relegation/promotion play-off spot. Although Lewandowski has scored more goals this season than the entire Bielefeld squad, Bielefeld did pull off a 3:3 draw in the Allianz Arena last February. One other match to watch on Saturday is the Rhine derby between hosts 1. FC Köln and nearby Borussia Mönchengladbach. Köln striker Anthony Modeste is only outscored this season by Lewandowski and Haaland, but is recovering from a knock in last Sunday’s draw with Mainz. Gladbach are 3 points ahead of Cologne in the table, but have won just 1 of their 6 away matches this season. Looking ahead to Sunday, Union Berlin, Leverkusen, and Leipzig will look to stay competitive in the top of the table. Union Berlin will be traveling to Frankfurt, while Leipzig will be hosting Leverkusen. In the latter match, Leverkusen’s Florian Wirtz will try to end a dry spell in scoring, while Leipzig’s Christopher Nkunku will compete against fellow PSG youth academy product Moussa Diaby.
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