Koln avoided direct relegation from the German top-flight with a dramatic 1-0 win over Schalke on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Holstein had to be content with a third-place finish in 2. Bundesliga and a subsequent playoff battle after 3-2 losses in their last two games of the campaign.
The visitors have never featured in the Bundesliga and in their last playoff appearance, they lost 4-1 on aggregate to Wolfsburg in 2018.
Koln vs Holstein Kiel Head-to-Head
The two sides have faced each other just twice so far. Both of these meetings came in the 2. Bundesliga during the 2018-19 campaign. Koln have a win to their name while their first-ever meeting ended in a 1-1 draw.
Their last meeting took place at Wednesday's venue and that game ended in a massive 4-0 win for the Billy Goats. They went on to achieve promotion to the Bundesliga later that season.
Koln form guide in Bundesliga: W-D-L-W-W
Holstein Kiel form guide in 2. Bundesliga: L-L-W-W-W
Koln vs Holstein Kiel Team News
The home side are set to be without the services of striker Sebastian Andersson for the first leg. The Swedish international has been suffering from a knee injury and might only be able to return to the fold in the second leg.
Elvis Rexhbecaj is a doubt for the game on account of a knock he picked up in the 0-0 draw with Hertha Berlin earlier this month.
Injured: Sebastian Andersson
Doubtful: Elvis Rexhbecaj
The visiting team also have a few injury concerns with Ahmet Arslan, Mikkel Kirkeskov and Stefan Thesker all ruled out.
Alexander Mühling and Jonas Meffert picked up their fifth yellow cards of the campaign and are suspended for the first leg.
Injured: Ahmet Arslan, Mikkel Kirkeskov, Stefan Thesker
Suspended: Alexander Mühling, Jonas Meffert
Koln vs Holstein Kiel Predicted XI
Koln Predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Timo Horn; Kingsley Ehizibue, Sebastiaan Bornauw, Rafael Czichos, Jannes Horn; Salih Ozcan, Jonas Hector; Marius Wolf, Dominick Drexler, Florian Kainz; Ondrej Duda
Holstien Kiel Probable XI (4-3-3): Thomas Dahne; Jannik Dehm, Simon Lorenz, Hauke Wahl, Marco Komenda; Jae-sung Lee, Niklas Hauptmann, Finn Porath; Fin Bartels Fabian Reese, Janni Serra
Koln vs Holstein Kiel Prediction
When we consider the stats for both sides, Kiel are superior, having scored 23 goals more than the hosts and conceding 25 goals fewer during the season.
While they can surely give Koln a tough fight, history is not on their side in the fixture. Since the playoff was re-introduced to the Bundesliga in 2008-09, top-flight sides have prevailed nine times and second-tier sides have won the two-legged fixture only thrice.
Given the hosts' better record in their two games against Kiel, the visiting side's back-to-back losses and Koln being at home, we believe they have what it takes to win here.
We expect the game to end in a narrow win for the hosts and Kiel are also expected to score at least one goal.
Prediction: Koln 2-1 Holstein Kiel
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