MARK O’Haire (@MarkOHaire) returns with four bets and plenty of big views ahead of the weekend’s Bundesliga action.
Freiburg v Borussia Dortmund | Saturday 14.30
Those who tuned in to Dortmund’s match against Augsburg on Wednesday night were in for a shock. The Black & Yellows put in one of the worst performances I can remember from the German giants as they fell to a meek 1-0 home defeat.
BVB were second best in all aspects of the fixture and were even playing against 10 men for the final half an hour. The home support turned the pressure up on their underperforming players and coach Jurgen Klopp after the final whistle with the 2013 Champions League finalists slumped at the bottom of the Bundesliga table.
Only in the relegation season of 1971/72 have they had fewer points at this stage of the season and never before have they netted as few as 18 goals after 19 games. It’s a sorry state of affairs with players shot of confidence, Klopp seemingly out of ideas and fans demanding answers. They will turn it around but with just four league wins in 19, the fallen giants are going to need to do some soul-searching.
I was happy to put my faith in Dortmund during midweek, finding an odds-against angle to support Klopp’s charges but I nearly had Kenco coming out of my nostrils when I saw they were as short as 4/7 to pocket maximum points from a trip to fellow strugglers Freiburg on Saturday.
BVB are winless in nine outings, have recorded W1-D2-L7 in their 10 away games (the worst road record in the league) and they’ve failed to score since their return from the winter break. What’s more, the team has struggled in possession since Christmas and as we’ve seen against Leverkusen and Augsburg, have failed to carve out enough goalscoring opportunities.
Freiburg may have only won once in their last eight but that was a 4-1 assassination of Eintracht Frankfurt last weekend and they followed that up with a battling display when going down to European chasing Gladbach in midweek.
Christian Streich’s side are certainly no slouches when playing at their Black Forrest base either. They’ve suffered just two home loses in nine and although Admir Mehmedi’s absence is a blow, we can’t ignore BetVictor’s offering of 9/10 for the hosts with a +1 start in the Asian Handicap market.
With this selection, we’ll get our cash back should Dortmund pocket the points by a one-goal margin. Should the fixture end in a draw or a home win, we’ll be in profit.
Wolfsburg v Hoffenheim | Saturday 14.30
Wolfsburg were made to work hard for their midweek point at Eintracht Frankfurt but returning to the Volkswagen Arena this weekend they should prove too good for out-of-sorts Hoffenheim in what’s dubbed El Plastico.
The Wolves have W11-D4 in their last 15 home fixtures and of course, took Bayern Munich to the slaughterhouse last Friday night with Kevin De Bruyne taking a leading role. They deservedly sit in second and in my mind, are without doubt the next best the Bundesliga has to offer behind Bayern.
Hoffenheim arrive on the back of a torrid turn of form. Seven defeats in 10 matches including four on their last five away days has seen Markus Gisdol’s team slide out of the reckoning for a European place and many questions posed to the Hoff boss.
I’m fully expecting a home victory but it’s too short to back. So instead I’ll have a play on Wolfsburg and Over 2.5 Goals at 21/20 with Betfair. The last nine meetings have seen Both Teams To Score and there are plenty of trends in our favour as we hope for another high-scoring contest.
Wolfsburg have seen six of their 10 outings at the Volkswagen Arena feature three goals or more whilst Dieter Hecking’s hosts have kept just five clean sheets in their 19 matches this campaign. That should encourage a Hoffenheim side that have scored in 15/19 this term and seen Over 2.5 Goals prove a winner in eight of their previous 10.
Werder Bremen v Bayer Leverkusen | Sunday 14.30 | BT Sport 2
Three matchdays ago Werder Bremen were propping up the league table. Fast-forward to today and the north-west club are in the dizzy heights of 11th. The new year has brought about back-to-back victories at the start of the Rückrunde for the first time since 2007. Life is good.
It’s been a sea of change ever since Robin Dutt was given the boot and replaced by Viktor Skripnik. His 10 games in charge have produced six wins and 19 points; that’s the fifth-best return during that period.
Werder have tightened up defensively, looking far more organised on the pitch, showing character and courage and proving very difficult when playing in their own backyard. Skripnik’s five games at Weserstadion have ended with four wins and a draw, scoring at least two goals in each.
So you won’t be surprised to hear I’m greatly encouraged to see we can side with the hosts at 43/40 with a +0.50 start on the Asian Handicap market thanks to Bet365. It’s essentially the same bet as the Double Chance and means we’ll be in profit should the home team avoid defeat.
Leverkusen make the relatively short journey north with just four league wins under their belts since mid-September. There’s something not quite clicking for Roger Schmidt’s team and although they’re looking strong at the back, they’re just not scoring enough goals to be considered Germany’s next best behind Bayern.
Bayer’s last six games have featured no more than two goals and the last eight Bundesliga goals they’ve leaked have all come from set-pieces. There’s no doubt about their potential ability but they need to be showing a lot more if they’re to be considered a decent bet when odds-on.
Augsburg v Eintracht Frankfurt | Sunday 16.30 | BT Sport 1
Augsburg were barely mentioned in the aftermath to Wednesday night’s Bundesliga. Dortmund hogged the headlines but the Fuggerstädter’s rise up the standings continues as Markus Weinzierl’s reputation soars.
On Sunday they’re back on familiar territory and at the SGL Arena, Augsburg tend to thrive. They’ve bagged maximum points from nine of their last 11 on home soil and started 2015 with back-to-back victories to cement their place in fourth.
I’m more than happy to put my faith in the Weinzierl’s wonders this weekend but I’ll throw in Over 2.5 Goals too with Betfair offering a tasty 17/10 on the double. Why? Well firstly, Augsburg have scored at least twice in five of their last six and should get plenty of opportunities against a ragged Frankfurt.
The visitors are winless in five (D3-L2) but have proved a punters dream when chasing goals-based bets – eight of their last 10 have featured three goals or more and that correlates nicely with Augsburg’s home figures, where nine of their last 11 have broken the Over 2.5 Goals barrier.
Frankfurt’s fixtures are averaging 3.95 goals-per-game, they’ve scored in eight of their nine road trips and kept just two clean sheets all season. I’ll eat my hat if this match doesn’t result in goals but throw in-form Augsburg into the equation for a more meaty punt.
Freiburg v Borussia Dortmund – Freiburg +1 Asian Handicap (9/10 BetVictor)
Wolfsburg v Hoffenheim – Wolfsburg to win and Over 2.5 Goals (21/20 Betfair)
Werder Bremen v Bayer Leverkusen – Werder Bremen +0.50 Asian Handicap (43/40 Bet365)
Augsburg v Eintracht Frankfurt – Augsburg to win and Over 2.5 Goals (17/10 Betfair)
*Remember, you can earn a bonus of up to 100% on your returns if you place accumulators on the Premier League, Serie A, La Liga or Bundesliga with Bet365. Place a pre-match accumulator of 3 or more selections combining teams in any of those competitions, and if successful Bet365 will add the a bonus to your returns.*
What’s your best Bundesliga bet this weekend? Are you backing Dortmund to end their woes? Will Bayern Munich slice and dice Stuttgart?
Let us know your best bets in the comments box below!