WANT the best bets from the Bundesliga this weekend? German football fanatic Mark O’Haire (@MarkOHaire) shares his thoughts on Matchday 13.
Ingolstadt v Darmstadt | Sunday 16.30 | BT Sport 1
Credit to you if you’re tuning into this Bundesliga clash on Sunday afternoon between two of the top tiers newly-promoted sides because it ain’t going to be pretty…
Ingolstadt have W4-D4-L4 this term to sit above their visitors since promotion but their 2-0 win over Frankfurt five fixtures ago is their only success in seven as Ralph Hasenhüttl’s side’s bright start has started to turn a little sour.
The hosts are the league’s lowest scorers with seven – no player has netted more than once – with FCI being shut out on six occasions already. Ingolstadt have scored just twice in their five home games and neither of these came before the 78th minute.
Conversely, Die Schanzer have conceded just nine goals in 12 and so have the second-best defensive record in the league, behind only the imperious Bayern Munich. Not bad, eh?
Roger’s return from suspension will aid FCI’s defensive shape but Matthew Leckie’s ban means their attacking potential is blunted once more. So a low-scoring tie looks highly likely when considering all bar one of Ingolstadt’s matches have fallen below the 2.5 line with eight having fewer than two goals.
Darmstadt have managed a sole victory in six (against rock bottom Augsburg) and Dirk Schuster’s travellers are without leading marksman Sandro Wagner. Their previous four have also featured Under 2.5 Goals, as have all bar one of their five on their travels.
These two clubs have posted the worst passing accuracy and lowest possession stats in the league and I’m happy taking Under 2 Goals at 10/9 with Marathon on the Asian Goals line – we’ll get our cash back should this contest produce exactly two goals with one or fewer seeing our bet deemed a winner on Sunday.
Borussia Monchengladbach v Hannover | Saturday 14.30
The international break came at a good time for Gladbach and interim boss Andre Schubert. The Foals had started to feel the weight of a hectic fixture schedule with injuries mounting but it also gave the board a chance to step back and reflect upon the impact Schubert has made since stepping into the breach left by Lucien Favre.
Borussia have picked up 19 points in their seven games under the caretaker coach – a league high together with Bayern – so it was no major surprise to see Schubert given the gig on a full-time basis. This weekend he bids to become only the second Gladbach boss to remain unbeaten in his first eight games in charge.
Schubert will have to do it without midfield marauder Granit Xhaka through suspension with Havard Nordtveit likely to fill in. And a back injury is likely to keep centre-half Alvaro Dominguez out of action for the rest of the year so Roel Brouwers should deputise with Martin Stranzl already sidelined.
Sure, the Foals are weakened by those two absentees but sitting just a point off the top-four following their fabulous run of form, the hosts look a decent bet to continue their electrifying run with a comfortable victory over Hannover on Saturday. All six wins under Schubert have come via a margin of two goals and with Bet365 offering 17/20 on Gladbach -1 in the Asian Handicap, I’m keen to get involved.
Should Borussia win by a solitary goal, we’ll get our cash back. But a two-goal win or better will see our bet rewarded with profit.
Regular readers will know I’m no great fan of Hannover’s and although eight of their 11 points have come on the road, including successive away victories, Michael Frontzeck’s men have proven far from convincing. Only Ingolstadt and Hamburg have scored fewer goals than Die Roten with the 96ers struggling in possession and often relying on set-plays.
Too bad then that chief set-piece specialist Hiroshi Kiyotake (involved in even of Hannover's last eight Bundesliga goals) was injured on international duty whilst inspirational Leon Andreasen remains a fitness doubt for Saturday. Die Roten have trailed at the interval in all bar two of their last 11 away days and been beaten by two or more goals in 12/19 visits to top-six clubs. I’d expect that run to continue at Borussia Park.
Wolfsburg v Werder Bremen | Saturday 14.30
Wolfsburg have now gone 28 Bundesliga games without defeat (W21-D7-L0) at their Lower Saxony base and that’s the best run of form for any side in Europe’s top five leagues. Despite losing three of their last four, I don’t expect Dieter Hecking’s troops to surrender that sound return on Saturday when Werder Bremen visit.
A disappointing defeat to Mainz before the international break attracted criticism and although Julian Draxler’s suspension is a blow, Max Kruse’s return from injury should aid the Wolves’ prospects. Wolfsburg should prove too strong for a Bremen side that tends to crumble when visiting the league’s leading lights.
Werder may have claimed 10 of their 13 points away from home this season (only Bayern, Dortmund and Ingolstadt have picked up more points on the road) but the River Islanders have W0-D1-L11 of their last 12 visits to top-three clubs, leaking 39 goals. At top-six teams, the record is just as bad – 15 losses in 20!
Victor Skrypnyk’s men have W0-D1-L6 in their last seven with Wolfsburg, leaking 16 in the most recent five meetings alone, and head into this contest without a clean sheet this campaign. However, they’re well worth supporting to score a goal in a home win.
Bremen have won two of their last three and been creating chances following their switch to a more stable and fluid 4-1-4-1 formation. And with Wolfsburg likely to be without Ricardo Rodriguez, they should stand a good chance in enhancing a return of 15/18 (83%) of winning Both Teams To Score bets in away fixtures under Skrypnyk’s watch.
The Wolves have notched at least twice in all bar one of their home league games this term whilst Over 2.5 Goals has proven profitable in 12 of their past 15 at the Volkswagen Arena. With that in mind, a wee play on Wolfsburg to win and BTTS at 21/10 with Bet365 makes plenty of sense.
Ingolstadt v Darmstadt – Under 2 Goals (10/9 Marathon)
Borussia Monchengladbach v Hannover – Borussia Monchengladbach -1 Asian Handicap (17/20 Bet365)
Wolfsburg v Werder Bremen – Wolfsburg to win and Both Teams To Score (21/10 Bet365)
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