Our German Bundesliga writer previews matchday 26 of the 2016/17 season.
With the international break discarded to one side, a reflection on the last Bundesliga weekend could define it as the point of the season that Leipzig’s title bid truly crumbled. Bayern Munich have leapt 13 points ahead on the table and with only nine gameweeks left this season, there’s little chance of anyone chasing down the Bavarians. A record-breaking fifth consecutive title awaits the impending Bundesliga champions.
Friday 31 March
Hertha Berlin 7/4 | Draw 22/10 | Hoffenheim 31/20
Hertha Berlin are in the thick of a race for European football next season and are currently fifth on the table, five points behind Hoffenheim and three ahead of a Cologne side who beat them 4-2 in their last outing.
It’s been a rollercoaster ride for Berlin fans in recent weeks, with two wins, two losses and a draw. Hoffenheim occupy a Champions League spot and improved their chances of qualification with a 1-0 win over Leverkusen. Hoffenheim to get a result on the Double Chance at 9/20 is the tip.
Saturday 1 April
Bayern Munich 1/11 | Draw 8/1 | Augsburg 24/1
Bayern Munich marched closer to yet another German title with a competent if unremarkable 1-0 victory over Monchengladbach in their last match. Thomas Muller broke his goalscoring drought in the Bundesliga, netting for only the second time this season to seal all three points.
Augsburg came from behind to earn a 1-1 draw at home to Freiburg and are just two points above the relegation zone. Over 3.5 Goals at 17/20 looks a good bet.
Schalke 26/10 | Draw 5/2 | Dortmund 19/20
Schalke claimed a 1-0 victory over Mainz in their last outing which was only their second away win of the entire campaign. Sead Kolasinac drilled home a goal in the 50th minute as the visitors took control in the second half.
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Below-par Dortmund still picked up three points thanks to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s 30th goal of the season in a 1-0 win over Ingolstadt. It kept an impressive unbeaten home record in the league intact, one that stretches back almost two years to the weekend. Dortmund have struggled away from home but the Revierderby is a fixture that sees form discarded. Both Teams to Score at 13/20 is the tip.
Hamburg 13/10 | Draw 43/20 | Cologne 22/10
Struggling Hamburg held Eintracht Frankfurt to a goalless draw in their last outing, ensuring the club has now gone three matches unbeaten. Although Hamburg are fighting, they remain in the relegation playoff place and two points shy of safety.
However, the good results have basically condemned Ingolstadt and Darmstadt to relegation and Hamburg will be hopeful of top flight football next season. Anthony Modeste scored a hat-trick as Cologne defeated Hertha Berlin 4-2. Although their form is variable, Cologne are worth the punt at 22/10 for the away win.
Freiburg 12/10 | Draw 24/10 | Werder Bremen 2/1
Freiburg will be pleased as punch with eighth in the league and the 1-1 draw with Augsburg in their last outing simply underlines their resolute approach to this season. Florian Niederlechner’s penalty gave the club the lead but Augsburg quickly pulled one back, the match ending as Freiburg’s third draw in five matches.
Werder Bremen have leapt into life in recent weeks, winning four and drawing one of their last five matches including a 3-0 victory over high-flying Leipzig in their last outing. Freiburg can be a stubborn side at home but I’m hopeful of the away victory at a valuable 2/1.
Leipzig 7/20 | Draw 15/4 | Darmstadt 7/1
Leipzig’s 3-0 loss to Werder Bremen leaves the club 13 points behind Bayern Munich and with only one point from their last three league matches. Indeed, Leipzig have only managed two wins from their last seven. While the title is largely out of their reach, Champions League football would have been considered a certainty.
However they will now be looking down rather than up the table with Dortmund and Hoffenheim only three and four points behind them respectively. Darmstadt are in wretched form and will undoubtedly be relegated. Back the home win at 7/20.
Eintracht Frankfurt 31/20 | Draw 43/20 | Monchengladbach 7/4
Frankfurt were held to a goalless draw by Hamburg in their last outing and have plummeted down the table since once occupying third. Now seventh, Frankfurt have collected just one point from their last six league matches.
Monchengladbach were lucky to depart their home ground with a 1-0 loss to Bayern Munich, the champions spurning numerous chances in a one-sided match. Gladbach are also struggling for form and I like Under 2.5 Goals in this match at 13/20.
Sunday 2 April
Ingolstadt 12/10 | Draw 43/20 | Mainz 24/10
Ingolstadt are mired in relegation and lost 1-0 to Dortmund in their last league outing. It was actually a brave performance from the club, as Dortmund took their foot off the gas following Aubameyang’s early goal. Ingolstadt took the game to Dortmund but could not find a way through, eventually leaving with nothing to show for their spirit.
Mainz lost 1-0 at home to Schalke in a match in which they had chances in the first half, but ultimately fizzled against stronger opposition. Mainz are just two points clear of relegation in a congested bottom half of the table and their recent form is worrying. I’m tipping a valuable home win at 12/10.
Leverkusen 8/10 | Draw 26/10 | Wolfsburg 32/10
Sunday’s final clash comes in the form of a meeting of former Bundesliga giants. Both clubs have really struggled this season and Leverkusen, 11th, are only two points above Wolfsburg in 15th. In turn, Wolfsburg are only two points clear of relegation. The importance of this match for both of these clubs could not be stressed more.
Wolfsburg are coming off two 1-0 wins while Leverkusen have not won a league match in their last four times of asking. This game generally produces action and Over 2.5 Goals at 7/10 is the tip.
TREBLE @ 3/1
Bayern Munich v Augsburg Over 3.5 Goals 17/20
Leipzig Win 7/20
Leverkusen v Wolfsburg Over 2.5 Goals 7/10
Written by Rick John Henry @Hollywoodbets