Bundesliga Matchday 4 Preview


(Edit:  More information added to Sunday matches from original post)

After Matchday 3, Bayern Munich are the only team with a 100% record after they beat Bayer Leverkusen as Wolfsburg and Hertha Berlin drew each other. Two teams, Schalke and Leverkusen, are still on a 0% record. Four other teams are still looking for their first win. This weekend features a battle of Champions League teams and also a battle of Europa League teams. Welcome to Matchday 4.


Stuttgart got on the board thanks to a brace from Mario Gomez in their 3-3 draw with Freiburg last week. Should he score this Friday, he’ll be the only man to score against all 18 current top-flight clubs. Nicolas Gonzalez is expected to partner up front with him for the hosts. 

Fortuna got their first win in the top flight since February 16th, 2013 after they defeated Hoffenheim last weekend. A late strike by Dodi Lukebakio sealed the deal. Fortuna are hoping that their strike duo of Marvin Ducksch and Rouwen Hennings can get on the board after combining for 31 goals last season in Bundesliga 2. 

TSG 1899 HOFFENHEIM vs. BORUSSIA DORTMUND (Saturday at 8:30am CT, FS1)

Both teams are coming off Champions League matches in midweek. Dortmund left it late before Christian Pulisic scored to give BVB the win at Club Brugge. Hoffenheim managed a 2-2 at Shakhtar Donetsk. 

Changes could be afoot for the hosts after starting the same XI in Donetsk that lost at Fortuna, three days earlier. Reiss Nelson, who scored as a sub last Saturday and appeared again on Tuesday, could start as could Leonard Bittencourt. Hoffenheim have won their last six at home.

Pulisic, who missed the last few matches due to a muscle injury, may come off the bench on Saturday. Paco Alcacer is less likely to feature with a thigh injury. Thomas Delaney also missed the match in Brugge, but could return at the Rhein-Neckar Arena

FC NUREMBERG vs. HANNOVER 96 (Saturday at 8:30am CT, Fox Soccer Plus)

Both teams are still looking for their first win of the season. Nuremburg have drawn their last two matches against Mainz and Werder Bremen. The period between the 25th and 27th minutes has been difficult for Nuremberg as they have conceded the opening goal in all three of their matches during that time.

Hannover also have two points on the season. Their last match was a loss at RB Leipzig. Bobby Wood is hopeful of a start in this one. 

Expect goals in this one as the two sides have never had a goalless draw in their previous 36 meetings in the Bundesliga. 

VfL WOLFSBURG vs. SC FRIEBURG (Saturday at 8:30am CT, Fox Soccer Matchpass)

Wolfsburg are still undefeated after a draw with Hertha Berlin and are among several teams on seven points. John Brooks and Robin Knoche looks to be a stable central defense pairing for the Wolves. They have also been spreading the wealth up front. Seven different players have scored Wolfsburg’s seven goals so far this year.

Freiburg got their first point of the season after a draw with Stuttgart. Coach Christian Streich returned to the technical area after missing the first two matches with a back problem. Pascal Stenzel is suspended after picking up two yellows last weekend. 

FC AUGSBURG vs. WERDER BREMEN (Saturday at 8:30am CT, Fox Soccer MatchPass)

Dong-Won Ji is set to miss a few weeks with an ankle ligament injury in FCA’s loss to Mainz last weekend. Alfred Finnbogason is also expected to miss the match with his knee injury. Captain Daniel Baier is set to make his 250th Bundesliga appearance and 300th in all competitions with Augsburg. 

Ex-Dortmund man Nuri Sahin could start for the Green-Whites. They also gave up a late goal in their draw to Mainz. Claudio Pizzaro, 40 in October, could partner alongside Max Kruse up front. Bremen have four goals so far this season—none from a striker. 


Maximilian Mittlestadt may return to the lineup for the capital club after missing out on the draw against Wolfsburg. Davie Selke did return last week as a late sub recovering from a collapsed lung. Hertha may want to be careful in their own area. They have conceded a penalty in each of their first three matches and a fourth would be a record. 

Hertha also have to be wary of Thogan Hazard who has scored more goals against them than any other team as a professional. He has yet to score for the Foals this season. Gladbach have also won eight of their last nine matches in the Bundesliga against Hertha. 

FC SCHALKE vs. BAYERN MUNICH (Saturday at 11:30am CT, FS2)

It’s 1 vs. 2 in terms of number of supporters, but it’s 1 vs. 17 in terms of the table. Bayern’s 100% record is up against Schalke’s 0% record. Schalke did get a draw against Porto in Champions League action while Bayern got a win at Benfica. 

Sebastian Rudy could feature against his former club after joining Schalke last month. Weston McKennie assisted on Breel Embolo’s strike against Porto on Wednesday and is set to start on Saturday. 

Despite injuries to Corentin Tolisso, Kingsley Coman, and Rafinha; Bayern just keep rolling along and bets are likely being taken as to who will be the first to take points from the six-time defending champions. Renato Sanches may start after scoring against Benfica. Javi Martinez and Thiago suffered knocks on Wednesday, but the former is expected to be in the lineup at the Veltins. This match may feature some squad rotation for the Bavarians as the fixture list starts to get crowded. Bayern have not lost during Oktoberfest since 2010. 

BAYER LEVERKUSEN vs. FSV MAINZ 05 (Sunday at 8:30am CT, FS1)

Mainz are one of five teams on seven points while Leverkusen are one of two teams on zero points. However, Bayer did come from behind to get all three points in their Europa League encounter against Ludogorets of Bulgaria on Thursday. Also however, Karim Bellarbi was hit with a four-match ban after his rash challenge on Rafinha. 

Mainz came from behind to defeat Augsburg to move up to sixth in the table. Three of their four strikes this season have come from substitutes while they have allowed the fewest so far with two compared to Leverkusen’s league-worst eight.


Both teams were in Europa League action on Thursday. Both teams fell behind in their matches. Both teams pulled level. Frankfurt went on to win in Marseille while Leipzig lost at home to “sister-not-sister” club FC Salzburg. Jetro Willems is out through suspension after a red card last week. Frankfurt are hoping to return to winning ways against Leipzig after back-to-back losses following an opening-day win.

RB Leipzig got their first win last week against Hannover 96, though Timo Werner suffered a knock in that match that caused him to miss Thursday’s match against Salzburg. Emil Forsberg was also rested on Thursday, but is more likely to feature on Sunday. 


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