Hertha BSC v TSG Hoffenheim
The Bundesliga weekend starts with an important clash in the race for the final Champions League place. Hertha, five points behind fourth place Hoffenheim, will be without full back and free kick specialist Marvin Plattenhardt through injury. Mitchell Weiser is also sidelined and that is likely to weaken Pal Dardai’s side at the back.
The Hoffe don’t have any injuries to contend with but have struggled on the road with just one win away from home in their last eight. Hertha’s need to close the gap on Hoffenheim in the table should force them onto the front foot. Julian Nagelsmann’s team are one of the most capable sides in the division on the counter attack, which makes over 2.5 goals at 2.08 good value.
Bayern Munich v FC Augsburg
A foot injury will keep Manuel Neuer out of Bayern Munich’s next two games in the Bundesliga, starting with Augsburg’s visit on Saturday, whilst Xabi Alonso and Javi Martinez are both suspended. The visitors meanwhile are struggling at the moment, with Manuel Baum’s team one of quite a few candidates for the relegation playoff.
Augsburg are likely to take heart though from Neuer’s injury even if Sven Ulreich is a solid Bundesliga keeper. The away side will create chances, Bayern will inevitably score more than them on Saturday but back Augsburg nevertheless to stick one away at the Allianz Arena with both teams to score at 2.55.
SC Freiburg v SV Werder Bremen
Werder Bremen enjoyed a surprisingly comfortable home win against RB Leipzig before the international break. Serge Gnabry wasn’t present for that victory and he won’t be in Freiburg on Saturday either. That will be a miss for Werder, given the amount of goals he’s struck away from the Weserstadion this season. Freiburg are only six points above Werder but they find themselves in the battle for a European spot. This will be tight but back Freiburg to edge it at 2.23.
Hamburg SV v 1. FC Köln
Cologne’s Anthony Modeste is the form player in the division right now, with five goals in his last two games. He’ll be without key wing man Yuya Osako in Hamburg after he picked up an injury on international duty with Japan. He’s just one of a few first team players that Cologne will be missing on Saturday. Hamburg, on the other hand, are hoping that centre back Mergim Mavraj will be fit to face his former club. Even if he isn’t, Hamburg’s home form has been so strong of late that, despite Modeste setting the world alight, they should come out on top here at 2.32.
RB Leipzig v SV Darmstadt 98
Saturday should be the moment where Leipzig get their challenge for Champions League football back on track. Top scorer Timo Werner is out injured but Davie Selke, linked with a move back to Bremen this week, is likely to deputise up front. Most importantly, Naby Keita will return in midfield. Darmstadt’s Terrence Boyd is on loan from Leipzig and will certainly have a point to prove on Saturday. Yet relegation is fast approaching for Torsten Fring’s outfit. They still haven’t picked up a point away from home this season and don’t expect that to change on Sautrday. Back Leipzig to win -1 at 1.80.
FC Schalke 04 v Borussia Dortmund
Prior to the international break, Schalke appeared to have turned a corner following back-to-back Bundesliga wins along with progression to the Europa League quarter finals. Dortmund’s last outing saw them limp past Ingolstadt in a game they were fortunate not to lose. Still, this Revierderby clash will show how much progress Schalke have really made in the last few weeks. Marco Reus will be missing for Dortmund but you can expect the away side to go for it. Schalke being high on confidence should make for an entertaining encounter. Go for over 3.5 goals at 2.75.
Eintracht Frankfurt v Borussia Mönchengladbach
As one point in six games suggests, Eintracht Frankfurt’s challenge for a European spot has faltered badly. After a month out though, Jesus Vallejo returns at the back for Frankfurt and his comeback along with Marco Fabian’s slightly further forward is likely to prove crucial to a turnaround in form. Gladbach captain Lars Stindl is also back from injury, with his return likely to sharpen the Foals attack. They’ve become stronger at the back since Dieter Hecking’s arrival too but such is the number of chances that both Eintracht and Borussia usually create, over 2.5 goals is worth backing at 2.16.
FC Ingolstadt v 1. FSV Mainz 05
If the table rewarded good performances, Ingolstadt would be higher than second from bottom. Sadly for coach Maik Walpurgis and co, it doesn’t and they looked doomed to the drop barring a remarkable run of results. Walpurgis was still handed a new contract over the international break, which was just reward for their improvement since his arrival.
Mainz have not been looking too handy of late. Selling Yunus Malli to Wolfsburg in January has blunted their attack with the club scoring just seven goals in nine games since his departure. Their away form has been shoddy too, so back Ingolstadt to get the better of them on Sunday at 2.23.
Bayer Leverkusen v VfL Wolfsburg
Both Leverkusen and Wolfsburg made coaching changes in March. It’s fair to say Wolfsburg have been more impressive and stronger under Andries Jonker than Leverkusen have since Tayfun Korkut was placed in charge. Leverkusen forward Julian Brandt has talked of getting nine points from their next three games but that would require a big improvement up front. The kamikaze defending has at least stopped but they look out of ideas going forward far too often. The odds may suggest an away win on Sunday would be a shock but it wouldn’t. It’s worth backing therefore at 4.70.