BUNDESLIGA boff Tom Loveys (@ValueBetMethods) returns to shares his favourite fancies from the opening weekend of action in Germany.
Bundesliga 2017/18 | Matchday 1 | 18th-20th August 2017
Bundesliga returns this Friday night and it’s arguably the most exciting league in the world –with it’s unrivalled atmosphere, full of colour, flags, food, beer and 877 goals last year, (2.87 per-match).
There are usually games across Friday, Saturday and Sunday as 18 teams compete for the title – which has been won by Bayern Munich for the last five seasons.
Unsurprisingly Bayern are a warm order for their sixth title in a row, they are best priced at 1/5 (BetStars) to be champions, with Dortmund at 7/1 (Bet365) and last year’s surprise package RB Leipzig at 22/1 (Unibet).
Bayern open the campaign with a home encounter to Bayer Leverkusen and are expected to kick-off with three points. So let’s get on our bike around Germany, trying to uncover some of the value around Matchday 1.
Mainz v Hannover | Saturday 19th August 2017, 14:30
Mainz went into free-fall last year and only narrowly avoided the relegation play-off on goal difference, they will be keen to start strongly this season and face new boys Hannover, who returned to the Bundesliga at the first time of asking.
Die Roten lost 10 of their 17 away games in the Bundesliga on their previous visit in 2015/16 before relegation but coach Andre Breitenreiter has a nine-game unbeaten record to defend since taking over during the middle of last season and securing automatic promotion.
To a trusted method for the first selection, Over 2.5 Goals (23/20 Sportingbet) obliged in nine of Mainz’s home games last year and 11 of Hannover’s away games in 2015/16 Bundesliga.
And with a 4-4 draw in Mainz’s opening home game of last season – this will be a result we’ll be happy to take on Saturday.
Hamburg v Augsburg | Saturday 19th August 2017, 14:30
Hamburg start their 55th consecutive Bundesliga season on Saturday at home to Augsburg; it’s an amazing record but recent seasons has seen this proud achievement come under threat.
Last season HSV finished in 14th with 38 points, just a point above the relegation play-offs losing 16 games. Augsburg didn’t fare much better finishing 13th, again with 38 points.
Both teams have strengthened in the summer – HSV making Kyriakos Papadopoulos’ loan a permanent move whilst Augsburg picked up ex-Hamburg Michael Gregoritsch for £5m and Venezuelan youngster Sergio Cordovo.
There doesn’t appear to be much between the two sides, so looking at the odds, Augsburg +0.5 Asian Handicap is appealing at 3/4 (188BET).
Augsburg’s head-to-head record is strong, having won six of the 10 last meetings and 3/5 away and despite losing in the DFB Pokal in the week – they did have a stand-out 4-0, away victory against Southampton in pre-season.
Hertha Berlin v Stuttgart | Saturday 19th August 2017, 14:30
Hertha considered themselves home specialists last season having won 12/17 at the Olympic Stadium, including the first six on the bounce.
Pal Dardai’s side take on newly promoted Stuttgart in their opening game and have added Matthew Leckie and Davie Selke, although the latter misses this game due to a foot injury.
Stuttgart conceded goals at will in their last stint in the Bundesliga in 2015/16 – and stopping these leaks will be imperative to Hannes Wolf’s attempts to stay in the division. They’ve added Ron-Robert Zieler between the sticks.
Stuttgart’s last two visits to the capital have seen 2-1 and 3-2 defeats but with both games going Over 2.5 Goals (1/1 Marathon) – this may be the angle to visit again.
Fourteen of Stuttgart’s 17 away games in the top-flight in 2015/16 saw Over 2.5 Goals whilst Hertha’s last two home games last season saw 4-1 and 6-2 defeats proving that goals could be in abundance.
Mainz v Hannover – Over 2.5 Goals (23/20 Sportingbet)
Hamburg v Augsburg – Augsburg +0.5 Asian Handicap (3/4 188BET)
Hertha Berlin v Stuttgart – Over 2.5 Goals (1/1 Marathon)