In the Driver’s Seat
Bundesliga Match Day 25 Preview
Official Bundesliga League Table
March 9 – Despite coming into the season as defending league champions, Borussia Dortmund were happy to deflect the role as favorites to FC Bayern Munich.
After this weekend’s matches, not even Dortmund will be able to deny that it is they who maybe speeding away from the rest of the pack.
Heading into Match Day 25, Jürgen Klopp’s men lead the Bundesliga table by seven points over the Bavarian giants and show no signs of slowing down. Saturday evening, Dortmund will visit FC Augsburg who are struggling to get out of the relegation zone. Back on October 1st, Robert Lewandowski scored a hat-trick to lead BVB to a 4-0 win over the newly promoted FCA.
Dortmund have not lost a match since September 18th, that’s 15 wins and 3 draws that have catapulted them from mid-table to the top, and on their way to another title. Augsburg won their last home match 3-0 but against a struggling Hertha BSC, and drew on the road versus a tough Hannover 96 side. Augsburg have played the top teams tough at home, but Dortmund’s talent should find a few goals for another win.
Bayern has lost not only their lead at the top of the table, but their footballing touch as well as they drop into mediocrity. The team full of stars on the international level have only won three of their last six, lost their Champions League match at FC Basel two weeks ago, and are coming off a 2-nil defeat at Bayer Leverkusen (who themselves got thumped 7-1 vs. Barcelona this week at Camp Nou) in which they could not find the finishing touch. They host Hoffenheim who have drawn six of the past nine matches and two wins, and they languish in the mid-table.
(Editor’s Note: Sport Eagle’s Salman Mitha will be live at the Allianz Arena tweeting analysis throughout the match between Bayern and Hoffenheim. Follow @Sal_SportEagle)
1. FC Nürnberg are back into contention for a European berth for next season. “Der Club” missed the Europa League by the slimmest of margins last year and it affected their start this year, going winless during eight consecutive matches. But they have made up for it now, winning their past three matches and moving up to ninth and ready to keep it coming.
FCN’s last win came at the expense of title pretender Borussia Monchengladbach who are eight points behind the leaders after the 1-0 loss. Gladbach will try to rebound against SC Freiburg at Borussia Park. Freiburg surprised FC Schalke 2-1. The loss by the Royal Blues effectively ended their title dreams, but also puts their Champions League qualification spot in jeopardy. The sit fourth in the Bundesliga and that means they would have to start play in August.
Schalke will host Hamburger SV for the final match of the Bundesliga weekend. Hamburg will be without suspended striker Paolo Guerrero, who will miss the next eight games after an errant tackle of the Stuttgart goalkeeper from behind in their 4-0 loss.
The race has now shifted from “who will win the title” but to “who will play in Europe”. The recent lackadaisical play by Bayern, Schalke and Monchengladbach has moved Dortmund to the catbird seat, and the rest to fend off the contenders like Nuremberg and Hannover.