BUNDESLIGA fanatic Jonny O'Sullivan (@libero_the) oversees the best bets from Saturday's 2.30pm kick-offs.
The Bundesliga is coming to a conclusion and so has the title race. At times throughout the season, Bayern Munich did not look like they were going to grab their eighth league title in a row. Dortmund collapsed in a very similar fashion to last season while Monchengladbach and RB Leipzig just do not have the staying power to keep up with the Bavarian giants.
Attention now turns towards the race for Champions League and the relegation scrap. Dusseldorf are fighting with Werder Bremen for survival with two impressive performances against Leipzig and Dortmund and Werder Bremen put in their strongest show of the season with an empathetic 5-1 win away from home last weekend.
Just one point separates the basement battlers, with a five-point gap to Mainz sitting in 16th, who could easily be dragged back into trouble should they be beaten by Bremen this weekend.
Mainz v Werder Bremen | Saturday 20th June 2020, 14:30 | BT Sport
Mainz host Werder Bremen in the biggest game of the Bundesliga weekend in terms of the stakes. If Mainz manages a draw or better they are almost guaranteeing themselves safety. However, should Bremen repeat their performance last weekend against Paderborn, they will place themselves just three points behind their opponents.
With both sides finding the back of the net in recent weeks, an attacking mindset may be the best form of the defence. Mainz have been outstanding in their last two as they picked up valuable wins against Frankfurt and Dortmund. Two 2-0 victories have put themselves in a position of minor comfort and they will be heading into this clash with full confidence.
Similar to Mainz, Werder Bremen have managed to find some form in the last few matches of the season. It may be too little too late, but Bremen's 5-1 win against Paderborn had the look of a side who felt like the shackles had been freed. A solid performance against Bayern resulted in a 1-0 loss but there were plenty of positives in this performance.
The last five matches between the two teams have resulted in 19 goals. Their meetings earlier in the season ended in a conclusive 5-0 away win for Mainz. This would be something that Werder will be feeling aggrieved about, and there would be no sweeter revenge than all three points and dragging their opponents into a final day scrap.
Both sides almost concede two goals per-game, with Mainz concerning 63 goals and Bremen conceding 65. When stakes are high, both the defences on display will be feeling the pressure, especially when both sides have quality going forward.
Quaison, Boetius, Mateta and Onisiwo provide an attacking threat for Mainz, while Rashica, Klaassen and Osako are all players who should have provided more for Bremen this season.
Bremen head into the match knowing that they have won eight of their 13 Bundesliga away games against Mainz, a better record than any other team they have faced more than 10 times away. Mainz have only a worse record against Bayern and Dortmund at home than against their guests on Saturday. Twemty-two of Bremen's 29 points have been collected away which is a staggering 79% of their points total.
No side in Bundesliga history who have picked up as many points as Bremen have away and finished lower than 14th. This shows just how poor Bremen have been on home soil this season. Bremen are not a bad team away from home and they should look to show this confidence in their biggest game of the season. They’re 7/4 (Sportingbet) to win.
Koln v Eintracht Frankfurt | Saturday 20th June 2020, 14:30 | BT Sport
Frankfurt are in hot form. With four wins in their last six, they have found consistency at last and placed themselves in a position to be able to have an outside shot at European football.
Daichi Kamada has been playing football of the highest quality and tearing teams to pieces. This is to the benefit of Andre Silva, who keeps receiving gold scoring opportunities on a silver platter from the Japanese star. Seven goals in his last nine matches and three goals in his last two have been a key reason behind Frankfurt's huge improvement in recent weeks.
When the Bundesliga restarted, many people, including myself, felt that Koln had a good chance of qualifying for Europe. However, reality has hit the Billy Goats as they failed to win any of their seven games since the restart, only picking up a miserable three points. They have put in miserable performances along the way against teams such as Mainz and Dusseldorf which highlights just how poor Saturday's hosts have been.
Conceding 17 goals in those games, including conceded two or more goals on six occasions out of a possible seven sums up the miserable post-COVID-19 form Koln have been enduring. With no wins in nine matches, the last thing Koln need is to face one of the form teams in the division who still have something to play for.
Frankfurt have dragged themselves out of a relegation battle and in typical competitive Bundesliga fashion, have given themselves a slim chance of European qualification. Adi Hutter’s visitors have won each of their last three away league games at Wolfsburg, Werder Bremen and Hertha Berlin too, and are up to ninth in the standings.
Only one loss in Frankfurt’s last six (against an unstoppable Bayern) have shown that they still have what was living within them during their sensation 2018/19 season.
Frankfurt are the highest scorers outside the top five with 55 goals in 32 games, so they should be going for the jugular against a pretty poor Koln side. An away win looks to be on the menu, all things considered, and is 17/11 (Sportingbet).
Mainz v Werder Bremen – Werder Bremen to win (7/4 Sportingbet)
Koln v Eintracht Frankfurt – Eintracht Frankfurt to win (17/11 Sportingbet)