Bundesliga Predictions and Best Bets – March 5-7, 2021
It is probably not really the biggest game in Germany – and especially not for Dortmund – but the high profile Der Klassiker takes place this weekend at the Allianz Arena. Bayern will be hoping it can extend its lead at the top of the Bundesliga as Leipzig faces a tricky away game at Freiburg.
At the other end of the table, there is not much hope for Schalke. But the Gelsenkirchen club let go a whole host of officials on Sunday after the thrashing at the hands of Stuttgart the day before. Fourth coach of the season, Christian Gross, was one of those to lose his job, as the season continues to go from bad to worse for the Royal Blues.
There is a full set of fixtures in the Bundesliga on matchday 24, and I will be looking at all of them, as well as picking out three of the best bets to consider in the German top-flight this weekend.
Mainz to Beat Schalke
Schalke remains the center of attention for a little longer this week as it kicks off matchday 24 at home against fellow strugglers Mainz. The Royal Blues’ Bundesliga time is surely soon to be up, but new boss Dimitrios Grammozis will be able to see if he can get the likes of Matthew Hoppe to play to the best of their ability and pick up just a second win of the season. The 5-1 debacle against Stuttgart last weekend suggests that this side can’t get any worse.
Mainz will know what a new manager can do for the club, as Bo Svensson has overseen some big wins in the nine games he has been in charge of. He couldn’t inspire his players into beating Augsburg at home last Sunday, though. But if all goes well this weekend, Mainz could climb out of the automatic relegation places for the first time since the opening day. That would be a huge achievement, considering the club sold its best striker in January.
Borussia Monchengladbach to Beat Bayer Leverkusen
Monchengladbach will be keen to steady the ship after a terrible run of form that coincided with the announcement that Marco Rose will be leaving in the summer to take over at Dortmund. The mood was not made any better in the week when the Foals were knocked out of the cup by Rose’s future employer. But there is some hope that the weekend will be better after the performance in that game – and the narrow defeat to Leipzig last weekend.
Bayer Leverkusen is another club enduring a torrid time at the moment. It has only won two of its last 11 and was knocked out of both the DFB Cup and the Europa League during that time. Leverkusen was well beaten by Freiburg at home last weekend in a result that sees the club only just hold on to a European place. But worse news was that January signing Tim Fosu-Mensah might miss the rest of the season after suffering a cruciate ligament tear. It just doesn’t get any better for Peter Bosz – and he may be suffering another defeat on Saturday.
Wolfsburg to Beat Hoffenheim
A draw away at Union Berlin last weekend was good enough to keep Hoffenheim’s three-game unbeaten run intact, but it will do well to carry on that streak this week as it welcomes Wolfsburg to the Rhein-Neckar-Arena. Andrej Kramaric will be the main hope for a goal once again, although the Croatian striker has not found the net in the last three games. The run of form has eased any worries of a relegation battle, though – a mid-table finish is virtually guaranteed now.
Wolfsburg has much loftier goals, though – and goes into this game on the back of an incredible seven-game run of clean sheets. It could even afford to be without defensive lynchpin John Brooks last week as Hertha was beaten 2-0. The American was suspended for that one but returns this week. With defeat to Leipzig in the cup in the week, Wolfsburg now only has the Bundesliga to concentrate on – and the hope that the top two both slip up.
RB Leipzig to Beat Freiburg
Freiburg got back to winning ways last weekend as it recorded an excellent result away to Bayer Leverkusen. Two goals in the quarter of an hour after the break were enough to see off a late rally from the host, and Freiburg took all three points to remain lingering just below the European spots. The Black Forest club has been much better since just before Christmas but might find things a little difficult on Sunday as it attempts to halt RB Leipzig’s charge.
Julian Nagelsmann’s side booked a DFB Cup semifinal berth in the week as it came from two goals down to beat Borussia Monchengladbach, with what was a weakened team because of injury. But both Dayot Upamecano and Angelino should return for this one at the weekend – and that should cause the home team some trouble at both ends of the pitch. With Bayern playing Dortmund later in the day, a win for Leipzig would see it go top of the league for the first time since October.
Eintracht Frankfurt to Beat Stuttgart
Frankfurt’s impressive 11-game unbeaten run in the Bundesliga came to a surprising end last weekend, as Werder Bremen came from a goal down to beat Adi Hutter’s side. The defeat could only be a minor blip, however, as Andre Silva kept on scoring to take his tally to 19. He has been a major reason why the Eagles are flying so high – and with Luka Jovic waiting on the bench to add his weight to the cause when required, Frankfurt should be able to see off a spirited Stuttgart on Saturday.
Stuttgart has enjoyed an incredibly good season so far, though. The 5-1 thrashing of Schalke last weekend hastened the departure of Christian Gross – and a number of other officials – from the Gelsenkirchen club, and the result was never in doubt. Stuttgart has scored more goals than any other club in the bottom half of the table, as well as more than Wolfsburg, who currently sit in third place and have Wout Weghorst at its disposal. Frankfurt can defend as well, though, so a home win seems the more likely here.
Hertha Berlin and Augsburg to Draw
A first-ever meeting of the Khedira brothers on the pitch will now not be happening, as Hertha’s Sami picked up an injury in his side’s defeat to Wolfsburg last week. He is just the latest to join a long list of absentees for Pal Dardai, as the new head coach attempts to win his first game in charge. He has actually only picked up one point in his five games and won’t be happy to know that star playmaker Matheus Cunha will probably miss this one too. Expensive signing Jhon Cordoba could start, though – and he will need to start scoring some more goals soon.
Augsburg could really do itself a big favor by coming away from the Olympiastadion with a win on Saturday, as it would put Hertha deeper in trouble while extending the gap between it and drop zone to 11 points. Augsburg can look to its last two games for inspiration, as it drew with Leverkusen and won away at fellow strugglers Mainz last weekend. Scoring goals has been an issue for Heiko Herrlich’s team all season, though, so a draw might be a more likely outcome.
Bayern Munich to Beat Borussia Dortmund
The outcome of Der Klassiker does not hold as much weight in the title race this season after Dortmund’s dip in form earlier in the year. But it should still be an enthralling encounter with two heavyweight strikers going head-to-head. Robert Lewandowski is still in pursuit of Gerd Muller’s long-standing Bundesliga goal record, but he will be just as happy with a win on Saturday if it means that Bayern stays on course for the title. Serge Gnabry should be back for this one, but Benjamin Pavard will probably miss out once again as he recovers from illness.
Dortmund will be waiting to hear whether in-form Jadon Sancho will be able to play against Bayern after complaining of a muscle injury following the cup win against Gladbach. The England international was the star of the show as Dortmund made it through to the semifinal, but he will be needed by head coach Edin Terzic if his side is to come away from the Allianz Arena with anything. A win for Dortmund would put it right back in the hunt for a Champions League place – but that result would be a surprise considering its performances this season.
Koln and Werder Bremen to Draw
With just three points separating Koln and Arminia Bielefeld in the relegation playoff place, head coach Markus Gisdol will know that his side needs to change things up if it is to make the remaining months of the season a little less fraught. Three defeats in a row – the last a 5-1 thrashing at the hands of Bayern – has not helped with the nerves, but this fixture would seem to be a good opportunity to stop that trend.
But Werder Bremen will still be on a high after surprisingly overcoming Eintracht Frankfurt last Friday. Milot Rashica may not have scored in that game, but he did everything but and will be a major threat against Koln on Sunday. Bremen even conceded within the first ten minutes against Frankfurt but came back to win in style and give its survival hopes a huge boost. The DFB Cup game in the week was postponed, so there should be no fitness excuses for this one.
Union Berlin to Beat Arminia Bielefeld
Arminia Bielefeld and Union Berlin round off the Bundesliga action this weekend as they meet in the late game on Sunday. Former Germany U20 coach Frank Kramer will look after Bielefeld, as Uwe Neuhaus was surprisingly shown the door after the 3-0 loss to Dortmund last weekend. It is difficult to see how much more Neuhaus could have done on such a meager budget, but Kramer now has 12 games (crucially including a game in hand) to get the club out of the bottom three and survive the season in the top-flight.
Union Berlin will spend little time worrying about Bielefeld’s position, as the capital city club looks to keep the pressure on Leverkusen in the European places. Max Kruse should be back once again for this one after scoring from the spot (unsurprisingly) in the 1-1 draw with Hoffenheim last weekend. On-loan striker Taiwo Awoniyi is set to remain on the sidelines, though, as he recovers from a thigh injury. With continental competition for just the second time in its history in its sights, Union should be the happiest by the end of the weekend.
My Top Bundesliga Picks for March 5-7, 2021
Here are my three picks in the Bundesliga for matchday 24. Odds are courtesy of Betway.
- Borussia Monchengladbach to beat Bayer Leverkusen – 2.40
- Wolfsburg to beat Hoffenheim – 2.40
- Hertha Berlin and Augsburg to draw – 3.50
My first pick this week is for Monchengladbach to begin a mini-revival and beat Leverkusen at home on Saturday. I’m not particularly confident of the Foals regaining the form of earlier in the season, but I do think that Leverkusen is playing badly at the moment. That should be enough for a home win – even if the timing of Marco Rose’s departure announcement was disastrous.
Next up, I’m going for Wolfsburg to continue its excellent season and beat Hoffenheim away from home. The defensive strength of the side has been incredible in the last two months – and that’s before you consider the goal-scoring prowess of Wout Weghorst. Hoffenheim won’t be able to deal with that this weekend.
My final pick for matchday 24 in the Bundesliga is for Hertha to fail, once again, to give new manager Pal Dardai his first win. The Berlin club looks to be in big trouble – and will really miss Cunha if the Brazilian is sidelined for this one. But Augsburg is never the most dangerous team to play against and, although a point is not really good enough for either side, it is still better than yet another defeat.