Eintracht Frankfurt 11.00, the draw 5.75, Bayern Munich 1.25
“We won’t have that much confidence,” said Frankfurt manager Armin Veh after the 6-1 disaster at Hertha. Veh is likely to stick with his 4-4-2 system, but can it work against a Bayern team who will flood the midfield with up to seven players? Mario Götze might get his first start, perhaps in the false nine position at the Commerzbank-Arena. To make matters worse, Frankfurt centre-back Carlos Zambrano could miss the game with a stomach bug. Everybody expects a Bayern win, with plenty of goals, and it’s hard to disagree. For a bit of value, you have to go as high as 3.5 (2.00) or look at Bayern at a -2 handicap (2.75)
Hamburger SV 2.15, the draw 3.40, TSG Hoffenheim 3.30
Hamburg surprised everyone with their courageous and quite thrilling performance in the 3-3 draw at Schalke. At home, they have tended to struggle to dictate the game in the past but both sides are set up in very attacking 4-2-3-1 that’s almost a 4-2-4 at times, so goals shouldn’t be a problem here. I quite like Hoffenheim in the Double Chance at 1.63. For a slightly riskier but juicier proposal, over 4.5 goals (4.70) is also worth a punt.
SC Freiburg 2.30, the draw 3.40, Mainz 05 3.00
These sides are quite similar: they rely on collective endeavour to make up for a lack of individual class. Freiburg’s well-documented wholesale changes after an exodus of first team players will take more time to bear fruit though, if the 3-1 defeat at Leverkusen is anything to go by. Their passing and marking was well off in that game. “Our style is hard to get used to when you’re new in the team,” said keeper Oliver Baumann. Mainz, on the other hand, looked surprisingly strong - at least going forward - in the 3-2 v Stuttgart. I fancy them to get at least a point. DNB at 2.12
VfB Stuttgart 3.50, the draw 3.45, Bayer Leverkusen 2.05
A tough game for the Swabians; VfB are without Serdar Tasci and Georg Niedermeier in the heart of the defence and will struggle against Leverkusen’s excellent transition game. Another plus for the visitors: key striker Stefan Kiessling will be fresh after missing out on yet another Germany game. There’s talk of Sami Hyypiä switching to a slightly more defensive formation but it’s hard to see past the away team. I would even take them at -1 for 3.75, such is their superiority.
VfL Wolfsburg 2.80, the draw 3.40, Schalke 04 2.45
Brazilian midfielder Luiz Gustavo could well be in action for the home side after making the switch from Bayern on Thursday. But Wolves will miss Maxi Arnold (suspended) and could be without winger Vierinha (groin). Schalke have no serious problems; Julian Draxler has recovered from his ankle injury, and there are plenty of options on the bench as well. This is a tough one to work out but the Royal Bues should just edge it, despite their unconvincing 3-3 draw v HSV in the opener. I like over 1.5 goals for the away team (1.88) to allow for a high-scoring draw as well.
Werder Bremen 1.95, the draw 3.45, FC Augsburg 3.85
Werder’s first win after 14 games without success came as a huge relief for the new regime in charge. Coach Robin Dutt could be moved to play a slightly more attacking line-up in his first home game, and in theory they should have more balance than Schaaf’s kamikaze Werder of yesteryear. Augsburg didn’t look as bad as the 4-0 drubbing at home to Dortmund suggested. They also had quite a few starters away on international duty but they will probably suffer more as a result of their high-tempo approach. Werder look generous at 1.95 for a home win.
Borussia Mönchengladbach 1.75, the draw 3.60, Hannover 96 4.70
Despite their very different starts to the season - the Foals lost 3-1 at Bayern, Hannover won 2-0 v Wolves - both teams showed that they will be contenders for the top third of the table. At the Borussenpark, Gladbach will be a real force but the same can probably not be said of Hannover, who were abysmal away from home last season. Christoph Kramer will keep his place in central midfield for Lucien Favre’s side instead of the more limited but experienced Havard Nordtveit. Mirko Slomka could give new Brazilian signing Marcelo from PSV a chance at centre-back. Both sides like to keep things tight but the first matchday suggested they’re not quite ready yet, defensively, to play their preferred game. It’ll be safer to simply go with the favourites here. Gladbach at 1.75.
1. FC Nürnberg 2.35, the draw 3.30, Hertha BSC 3.00
League leaders Hertha - that doesn’t quite sound right - travel to the Frankenstadion without regular full-backs Marcel Ndjeng and Johannes van den Bergh. Peter Pekarik and Fabian Holland should come in for the visitors. Nürnberg keeper Raphael Schäfer suffered an injury scare in training but will be fit to play; centre-back Per Nilsson, who picked up a knock with Sweden in midweek might not be, however. It’s predictably hard to predict the outcome of this game this but Jos Luhukay’s team have momentum. Take them at 2.1 draw no bet.
Borussia Dortmund 1.11, the draw 8.75, Eintracht Braunschweig 20.50
Germany drew 3-3 with Paraguay in Kaiserslautern on Wednesday night but Dortmund were undoubtedly on the losing side on the night: Mats Hummels had a bit of nightmare in defence and playmaker Ilkay Gündogan limped off with a back problem and will be out for two weeks. Marco Reus will play in his place, since Henrikh Mkhitaryan is still not quite ready for the starting XI. Dortmund were comfortable winners in the 4-0 v Augsburg last season but without Gündogan they might struggle to create chances against Braunschweig, who’ll play very deep and be fully committed in every tackle. There’s good value in taking the visitors at +3 (1.58) or +2 (2.55) on the handicap.