Written by Rick John Henry for @Hollywoodbets. Follow them both on Twitter and Facebook now!
It’s been a two-horse race for much of the Hinrunde with Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund the sides making early season statements. Perhaps it’s somewhat kind to Dortmund to refer to the league in such terms, although five points is not all that much in football’s grand scheme. The problem for the Westphalians is that Munich are as yet unbeaten and showing little signs of vulnerability. A goalless draw at the weekend in Frankfurt was uninspiring, yes, but Munich were never at risk of leaving with anything less than a point. At the other end of the spectrum, Hoffenheim and Augsburg bring up the rear as early contenders to make the drop.
FRIDAY 06 NOVEMBER
Hertha Berlin 17/10
Hannover secured a come-from-behind victory over the weekend, leaving Hamburg’s Volksparkstadion with all three points. Hannover are only a point above the relegation zone in fourteenth but have picked up three wins and a draw from their last five matches. They’ll hope to draw some confidence from their recent performances when they host a Hertha Berlin side who have made a promising start to the season. Berlin currently lie sixth on the log but suffered a heavy 4-1 home loss to Gladbach on Saturday. There will be some pressure on them to bounce back with haste but recent head-to-heads statistics, indicate that this will be difficult against a side that they haven’t beaten since 2012. With picking a winner proving difficult, Both Teams To Score at 17/20 makes enough appeal for Friday night.
SATURDAY 07 NOVEMBER
Eintracht Frankfurt 23/10
Huub Stevens’ first match in charge of Hoffenheim saw them secure a point away from home in a goalless draw with Cologne. It served to halt their string of losses but it still leaves Hoffenheim only a point above stone last and requiring much needed improvement. Frankfurt set out to frustrate Bayern Munich from the get-go and their 0-0 draw with the league champions gave Pep Guardiola cause to bemoan the negative tactics. I can’t help but sympathise with sides like Frankfurt facing big money behemoths such as the Bavarians and don’t blame them for looking to secure a point at all costs. They’ve won only one of their last seven league games and I’m tipping the home side to deliver a first victory for their new coach at 11/10.
Bayern Munich 1/10
Bayern Munich dropped their first points of the season in a stalemate away at Frankfurt. There was no way through Frankfurt’s resolute defence, although Munich did create some decent chances. Bayern dominated possession throughout and although Lewandowski found the back of the net in the final minute, the goal was ruled out for offside. Stuttgart managed to sneak themselves out of the relegation zone with a 2-0 win against promoted Darmstadt last weekend. Stuttgart have won two, lost two and drawn one of their last five matches but their chances of leaving the Allianz Arena with anything are slim at best. Bayern Munich are 8/10 to Win Both Halves and that’s great value considering what’s on offer.
It was another comprehensive victory for Andre Schubert’s men as Gladbach powered past Hertha Berlin 4-1 for their sixth Bundesliga win in a row. Gladbach have rapidly moved into fifth place on the table after spending some time rooted to the bottom after losing their first five matches. They’ve proven just how they sauntered into the Champions League last season and that good sides don’t simply become a bad one overnight, unless that side is Chelsea. However, I digress. Ingolstadt defended resolutely but could not hold onto the lead at Schalke. They’ll nevertheless be pleased to pick up the point from a 1-1 draw and have yet to concede more than one goal away from home all season. Gladbach are in fiery form though and I’m tipping them to put an end to Ingolstadt’s remarkable exploits on the road. You can catch Gladbach on the Halftime-Fulltime Double at a valuable 14/10.
Bayer Leverkusen 9/20
Wolfsburg handed Leverkusen their first loss in six league matches thanks to a Julian Draxler winner. Just when it looked like Leverkusen had found some stability after a shaky start to the 2015/16 season, they lost to another of the big Bundesliga sides. Leverkusen will certainly feel hard done by considering that the first Wolfsburg goal was clearly offside. Cologne hosted Hoffenheim in a goalless draw that was both scrappy and uninspiring. Cologne are currently located in mid-table and if last week’s performance is anything to go by, will prove no match for Leverkusen. Back the home side to prevail at 9/20.
Mainz’s poor run of form continued last weekend. Their 3-3 draw at Augsburg would’ve felt like a win, grabbing the equaliser in the final minute of the game. Yoshinori Muto completed his hat-trick to deny what would’ve only been Augsburg’s second win of the campaign. It also left Mainz with one victory in six Bundesliga matches, a 3-2 victory over Darmstadt a month ago. Wolfsburg secured three points in controversial fashion with their first goal scored against Leverkusen well offside. Wolfsburg have taken up third spot on the table but remain five points behind second-placed Dortmund. It seems likely that Wolfsburg will do enough to secure another win here. Back Wolves at 5/4.
Hamburger SV 17/10
Darmstadt squandered numerous chances in attempting to level with Stuttgart and eventually succumbed to their first away loss of the season. After such a promising start to the season, Darmstadt have now lost three of their last four league matches and are slowly slipping down the table. Hamburg were stunned as Hannover staged a comeback and their three-match unbeaten streak was ended at home. It’s difficult to separate these two sides given their exploits this season and I’m backing the Draw at 21/10.
SUNDAY 08 NOVEMBER
Borussia Dortmund 3/10
The marquee fixture of the weekend sees Dortmund as the overwhelming favourites to claim the Revierderby win at home. Their 3-1 win in Bremen last week was a good reflection of the current state of the Black and Yellows. Mats Hummels was terrible in defence once again and Dortmund are easily exposed at the back. However, going forward they are near unstoppable. Marco Reus scored a brace and Henrikh Mkhitaryan a header as Dortmund extended their form to a three-match winning streak. Schalke’s fans were less than impressed as the side went into the halftime break a goal down to Ingolstadt. The Royal Blues improved in the second half and grabbed the equaliser but will need to be far better if they hope to emerge from this match with a point. Without much value in the Dortmund win and the rate at which they are scoring, back Over 3.5 Goals at 21/20.
Werder Bremen 9/4
Augsburg have picked up only six points in eleven games and are currently rock bottom of the Bundesliga. They were minutes away from picking up their second win of the season but conceded in the final minute at Augsburg Arena, drawing 3-3 with Mainz. Anthony Ujah brought Werder Bremen level with Dortmund in the first half of their match but were ultimately outclassed by BVB. They’ve lost four of their last five matches and have now slid into the relegation zone. If anything, Werder Bremen have been better away from home and with Augsburg in big trouble, I’m tipping Bremen to come away with the goods. Back the away side at a valuable 9/4.
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