The visitors, meanwhile, are in the lofty position of fifth having only been promoted from the German second tier last season.
Manuel Baum's side were comprehensively outplayed by Borussia Dortmund in a 3-0 defeat in the Revierderby, with Manuel Akanji, Erling Braut Haaland and Mats Hummels all scoring in the second half after initially being frustrated by a defensive Schalke performance in the opening 45 minutes.
Indeed, Dortmund had an astonishing 75% possession in the game, with Schalke failing to record a single shot on target. Baum will be desperate to inject some attacking impetus into a side which has scored just two goals in five games so far this season.
However, it is worth noting that Schalke have already travelled to last season's top three sides, so it has clearly been a difficult schedule even if they would have expected more than a solitary point on the board.
Stuttgart at home would have been earmarked as a winnable match against potential relegation rivals at the start of the season, and while the visitors are performing well above expectations so far, there is little doubt Baum will be targeting his side's first league win since January to belatedly kick-start their campaign.
One man Stuttgart would have been desperate to get the better of is defender Ozan Kabak, who left Stuttgart for Schalke following their relegation in 2019. The 20-year-old Turkey international, who has been linked with a move to Liverpool in recent weeks, played just 15 league games for Stuttgart in a six-month spell before departing for Gelsenkirchen. However, he was banned for five matches after spitting in the direction of an opponent last month.
Having remained unbeaten since the opening day to move up to fifth in the table, Pellegrino Matarazzo's side will fancy their chances against a side bereft of confidence.
Admittedly their 1-1 draw at home to FC Koln last weekend was far from a classic, with Orel Mangala's first-minute opener cancelled out by Sebastian Andersson's penalty later in the first half, but Stuttgart are unlikely to require their best level of performance to overcome Schalke.
After scoring in the first three games of the season, striker Sasa Kalajdzic will be hoping to get back to goalscoring ways having blanked in his side's last two fixtures.
Schalke 04 Bundesliga form: LLDLL
Stuttgart Bundesliga form: LWDWD
Stuttgart form (all competitions): WLWDWD
The 41-year-old reverted to a back five against Dortmund, but is likely to utilise a back four against Stuttgart as his side go in chase of an invaluable win. Kabak is still suspended, though, so will not be a part of the defence.
Matarazzo's work at Stuttgart is all the more impressive given the amount of injured players he currently has in his squad, with Clinton Mola (hip), Konstantinos Mavropanos (meniscus), Borna Sosa (back), Maxime Awoudja (Achilles tendon), Erik Thommy and Philipp Forster (both match fitness) all likely to be unavailable for Friday's trip to Gelsenkirchen.
Despite being frustrated at home to Koln, he is likely to stick with the same XI which has largely served him so well in the opening weeks of the season.
Schalke 04 possible starting lineup:
Ronnow; Ludewig, Sane, Nastasic, Oczipka; Bentaleb, Mascareli, Harit; Skrzybski, Ibisevic, Raman
Stuttgart possible starting lineup:
Kobel; Stenzel, Karazor, Kempf; Wamangituka, Mangala, Endo, Coulibaly; Didavi, Castro; Kalajdzic
We say: Schalke 04 1-1 Stuttgart
Stuttgart have drawn 1-1 twice in five games, and we can see another tight draw here. Schalke's only point of the season came via that scoreline, too, and while they will be desperate to earn a first league win since January, neither side are likely to be too disappointed with avoiding defeat.