Predictions and Picks for Bundesliga Matchday 34 (2021)
It is the final matchday of the Bundesliga season, with all nine games taking place at the same time on Saturday. Bayern has already won the title, yet again, but there is still a fight on for the last remaining European place – and a battle against relegation for three clubs at the bottom.
I will take a look at every game in the German top flight this weekend and select three of the best bets to consider for matchday 34.
Bayern Munich to Beat Augsburg
Bayern has already claimed the league title – and Augsburg secured another season of Bundesliga action last week – but there will be some things to look out for here. Bayern should win easily, but all eyes will be on Robert Lewandowski as he attempts to break Gerd Muller’s 40-year goal-scoring record. It will also be the last game in Bayern red for David Alaba, Jerome Boateng, and Javi Martinez. Hansi Flick will also be in charge of his last game as Bayern head coach, ensuring that this will be a very emotional occasion.
Augsburg is only really here to make up the numbers this week, with everything going on at Bayern. But the 2-0 win against Werder Bremen last weekend was crucial for the club’s survival – especially when the opponent was in a similar position. It was the first win in six for the club and the first under Markus Weinzierl, who had arrived at the end of April. Defeat on Saturday will be expected, and the new head coach will already be concentrating on next season.
Borussia Dortmund to Beat Bayer Leverkusen
Dortmund goes into the final game of the season already qualified for the Champions League and the brand new DFB-Pokal winners. None of that looked like happening when Edin Terzic took over in December. But the club has overturned a five-point deficit to finish in the top four with a week to spare. Now Erling Haaland will be on the hunt for a few more goals before the season ends. He will be helped by Jadon Sancho, whose return to the team from injury a few months ago played a big part in Dortmund’s success this season.
Bayer Leverkusen started the season off in great form, even leading the way at one point, but fell away sharply in the middle of the campaign. Late-season managerial changes don’t always work, but Hannes Wolf dragged the club back up the table after Peter Bosz was sacked. Now, Leverkusen can play this final game of the season safe, knowing that a Europa League place is already assured. It’s unlikely that it will beat Dortmund, though, especially with Leon Bailey out for this one with a broken toe.
Koln to Beat Schalke
It is make-or-break time for Koln as it needs to win this game – and Arminia Bielefeld and Werder Bremen to lose theirs – to stay up. The good news for the Billy Goats is that they are playing already relegated Schalke. The bad news is that the Gelsenkirchen club has looked much better in recent weeks and even beat Frankfurt last week. Koln has only lost one of its last four games, though, and should have inspirational captain Jonas Hector back to play his part here.
Schalke’s incredible 4-3 win against Eintracht Frankfurt last weekend had the side effect of sealing Champions League qualification for bitter rivals Borussia Dortmund. But, with the Royal Blues already relegated, the fans will probably allow the players to celebrate a very rare victory. This game will be the last time a lot of the current squad will turn out for Schalke before the club kicks off next season in Bundesliga 2 for the first time in over 30 years.
Eintracht Frankfurt and Freiburg to Draw
It has been a hugely disappointing last month of the season for Frankfurt. Adi Hutter announced that he would be leaving in the summer to take over at Borussia Monchengladbach, and the team promptly lost 4-0 to that very club and then picked up just one more win in the last four games to miss out on Champions League soccer next season. The final ignominy was the loss to Schalke last weekend. With nothing riding on this game, Hutter may find it hard to raise his players.
Christian Streich should have no such trouble, as his Freiburg side still has a chance of sneaking into the Europa Conference League spot. Many other results will have to go Freiburg’s way for that to happen, but three points here are vital. It is a long shot – and the Black Forest will have to contain Andre Silva somehow – but this is a team that fought back from two goals down against Bayern last weekend to end up with a valuable draw.
Hoffenheim to Beat Hertha Berlin
A six-game unbeaten run at the end of the season has given Hoffenheim a very respectable mid-table position in a campaign that had looked as if it was heading south just a few months ago. Andrej Kramaric’s 19 league goals have been the main reason for the relative success – and he will be a threat here yet again. But, with nothing riding on this game, don’t expect the players from either side to push themselves too hard.
Hertha confirmed its Bundesliga status with a goalless draw with Koln last weekend, as it finished a run of five games in just 13 days after being forced to postpone fixtures because of COVID.
He will have to deal with a whole host of absentees this Saturday but will be able to select Sami Khedira as he plays his last ever game of professional soccer. The former Germany international announced his retirement last week.
Stuttgart to Beat Arminia Bielefeld
This is one of the few games in the Bundesliga this weekend where both clubs have something to play for. They both came up from the second tier last year, but Stuttgart has enjoyed the better campaign. Now Pellegrino Matarazzo’s side can even qualify for Europe with a win and for the other results to go its way. It will be a lot more difficult without main man Silas, but Stuttgart has looked very impressive this season and won the last two games after a four-game losing streak.
Arminia Bielefeld has won over many fans this season for the way it has played, but too many drawn games have really hampered the club’s chances of staying up. It still has its destiny in its own hands, though. Any kind of win on Saturday will keep the club up for a second successive season in the top flight – but any other kind of result could mean relegation or the need to win a playoff. There has only been one defeat in the last seven, but Frank Kramer’s side surely has to win this one now.
Union Berlin and RB Leipzig to Draw
Union Berlin is another club with a chance of qualifying for Europe this season – and holds all the cards in seventh. A win against Leipzig at the Stadion An der Alten Forsterei on Saturday would book a place in the inaugural Europa Conference League. But Die Eisernen have only won two of the last eight and come up against the Bundesliga runner-up this weekend. Head coach Urs Fischer will be nervously checking the scores elsewhere throughout this one.
Their final campaign with the club has turned out to be a disappointment after challenging for the title earlier on. Bayern ended up winning the league in quite a way, and Leipzig lost the cup final in the week after bowing out of the Champions League at the round of 16 stage. It is debatable how up for this game the players will be.
Borussia Monchengladbach to Beat Werder Bremen
Werder Bremen made the strange decision to sack head coach Florian Kohfeldt last week with just one game of the season remaining in a desperate bid to stay up. Now, not even a win here would guarantee safety, but it would mean a playoff place at the very least. But Bremen has not won a single game in the last nine – and has only managed to pick up one point in all that time. Club legend Thomas Schaaf will need Josh Sargent and Milot Rashica on top form to stand any chance here.
Even worse news for Werder Bremen is that Borussia Monchengladbach also has something to play for. After falling away dramatically earlier in the season – about the same time as Marco Rose announced that he would be leaving the club in the summer – the Foals still have a slight chance of qualifying for the final European place. Union Berlin currently has a one-point advantage, but if Gladbach can win or manage a better result than the capital city club – and Stuttgart and Freiburg fail to win – seventh place is theirs.
Wolfsburg to Beat Mainz
This has been a very good season for both of these clubs. Wolfsburg confirmed its Champions League qualification with the draw against RB Leipzig last weekend and should finish the campaign with the second-best defensive record in the Bundesliga. US international John Brooks has been a major factor in that success story – and it has been the goals of Wout Weghorst doing the job up the other end. Another victory should put a smile on the face of head coach Oliver Glasner in what could be his final game in charge.
Mainz looked dead and buried when Bo Svensson took over as head coach at the start of the year. But he has worked wonders with a team that also lost its top striker in the January transfer window. The 05ers had already confirmed its Bundesliga status before it took the field against Dortmund last weekend – and the ensuing defeat was the first reverse in ten games. Svensson is likely to play around with the squad again this weekend, so another good win is less likely. But Mainz fans will be more than happy with the Danish coach’s leadership this season.
My Bundesliga Bets for the Final Day of the Season
With a lot still to play for, there could be some very entertaining games in the Bundesliga on Saturday. With all games kicking off at the same time, it is sure to be an exhilarating day of soccer in Germany. Here are my three selections for the last day of the campaign.
Frankfurt fans must be the most disappointed in the Bundesliga at the moment. After looking like it would finish in the top four, thanks in part to the goals of Andre Silva, Adi Hutter’s announcement about leaving the club seemed to knock the team sideward. Now the Eagles will have to make do with the Europa League and might not beat Freiburg on Saturday that needs a win for its own chance of continental competition.
I’ve been very impressed with both Stuttgart and Arminia Bielefeld this season after they both came up from the second tier last year. Stuttgart has been an absolute revelation after finishing ten points behind Bielefeld last season, and the fact that it can still qualify for Europe is an outstanding achievement. Bielefeld has found life in the top flight more difficult, though – and a defeat here will probably mean the need for a playoff to survive this season.
My final pick is for Union Berlin to ruin Julian Nagelsmann’s big day as he leaves RB Leipzig at the end of the game. With nothing to play for, I still might have tipped Leipzig to win this one, but it is Union Berlin who needs the points to secure a place in the Europa Conference League next season. I’m not sure that it can manage the victory that would really do the job, but a draw should be possible to give it some hope, and the odds from Betway look pretty good to me.