Bundesliga: The Inevitables Likely to be Delayed

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As the Bundesliga nears its conclusion there are still many issues to be decided.

Robert Lewandowski, Bayern Munich player, applauding

The Bundesliga is reaching its finale with crucial games at either end of the table amongst six fixtures coming this Saturday.

Bayern Munich could be crowned champions for an eighth successive season, while Paderborn could be relegated – although agonies or ecstasies may well be prolonged for at least another week.

Dusseldorf v Borussia Dortmund

Borussia Dortmund have the chance to close the gap to the leaders to four points, and they will be expected to take it as they take on a Fortuna Dusseldorf side that occupies the relegation play-off position, three points clear of Werder Bremen in 17th place.

Obviously home sides have struggled since the restart with just ten wins out of 46 games in the Bundesliga and although Fortuna have made a reasonable return to action – losing and winning just once – that defeat was a 5-0 thrashing to Bayern, while they haven’t beaten a side of note this season.

BVB will of course take a win any which way but they do obviously carry a goal threat, netting eight and conceding just one in two away games since the restart.

Lucien Favre’s men have won nine of their last 11 games in all competitions – losing only to Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern – and they are 4/11 favourites to delay the champions’ party, with Dusseldorf a 13/2 chance and the draw at 7/4*.

Paderborn v Werder Bremen

Should El Fortunen fail to win, as many expect, Paderborn or Bremen can close the gap in a real basement battle at the Benteler Arena.

Even a win would not stop the home side from remaining at the foot of the table, while a defeat would only confirm their relegation if Dusseldorf upset the odds.

However, Werder can draw level on points with Dusseldorf should they win, and a four-goal swing could see them climb into 16th with a better goal difference.

Although both sides have struggled this term, it’s not hard to see why Werder are 6/5 to land the spoils and keep survival hopes alive.

Florian Kohfeldt’s men are simply better on the road than they are at home, having recorded two away wins out of two since the restart, while Paderborn have managed just two home wins all season and haven’t won anywhere for 11 games.

Steffen Baumgart’s men are available at 21/10 while a draw may be tempting at 53/20 as they have picked up four of them since the return to action.

Wolfsburg v Freiburg

Wolfsburg in sixth take on eighth-placed Freiburg at the Volkswagen Arena in a game that has a huge bearing on European places, with four points separating the pair in the table.

The Wolves are 20/29 favourites to consolidate their position in the Europa League place, the problem for jolly backers being they are at home.

Oliver Glasner’s men have a perfect away record since the end of the lockdown, while they have lost both home matches prior to this, and their form across the season has been better on the road.

Freiburg have drawn both their games on the road since the restart, which included a 1-1 stalemate at RB Leipzig and a 1-0 victory over Borussia Monchengladbach, results that should give them a degree of confidence.

Given that Freiburg have won two and drawn one of their last three meetings and came away from the Volkswagen Arena with a 3-1 win last season, there have certainly been worse 19/5 chances to claim the spoils, while the draw is on offer at 3/1.

Hertha Berlin v Eintracht Frankfort

Hertha Berlin have been one of the form sides since lockdown ended, resuming with three wins and a draw, before they fell to a narrow 1-0 defeat in Dortmund last time out.

Bruno Labbadia’s men still have a chance of Europe so should be going all out for the win, and odds against of 21/20 offers some value, particularly considering 12/5 chance Eintracht Frankfurt are safe in mid-table and have just been knocked out of the DFB Pokal at the semi-final stage.

Cologne v Union Berlin

Cologne’s clash with Union Berlin looks an ugly one with the home side winless in six while the capital club hasn’t won for eight, and being at home does not appear to be offering much advantage right now.

Will it be coronation time by the time Bayern kick off in the late game in what could potentially be a cracker?

Bayern Munich v Borussia Monchengladbach

Hansi Flick’s men have been imperious for some time now, and particularly since the restart, with five wins from five in the league while they booked their place in the DFB Pokal final in midweek – and everything seems rosy in the Munich garden.

Top-four chasers Borussia Monchengladbach will at the very least be fresher while they can take comfort in recent performances against Bayern, having won three of the last five meetings including a 3-0 success at the Allianz Arena in 2018, while they won 2-1 in the reverse fixture in December.

Marco Rose’s men appear tempting at 13/2 with the draw at 17/4, but recent defeats to Bayer Leverkusen and Freiburg along with a draw in Bremen do not strike fear into Bayern backers at 4/11.

However, Bayern will be without goal machine Robert Lewandowski and trusty sidekick Thomas Muller through suspension.

*All odds correct at time of writing

Rob has around 20 years journalism experience and has written and commentated on the likes of football, cricket and rugby. He also has an impressive background in racquet sports and regularly provides content on the likes of tennis and badminton.
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