Bundesliga Matchday 30 preview: Five to go!


Happy Easter, everybody! We have just five matches to go in the Bundesliga season and we still have a title race, a race for European spots, and just maybe a relegation battle. All the while, Eintracht Frankfurt still has two possible paths to next year’s UEFA Champions League.  Welcome to Matchday 30.

BAYERN MUNICH vs. WERDER BREMEN (Saturday at 8:30pm CT, FS1)

(Matchday 13:  Werder Bremen 1-2 Bayern Munich)

Bayern maintained a one-point advantage over Borussia Dortmund with a comfortable 4-1 win over Fortuna Dusseldorf on Sunday. Kingsley Coman scored twice and padded their superior advantage on goal difference over BVB. However, Manuel Neuer will miss the next two weeks with a calf injury. Sven Ulreich will deputize in goal. James Rodriguez might miss out with a groin strain.

The Green-Whites have not won against Bayern in league play since 2008 and have lost 16 straight. They hope for a different result with Player of the Month Max Kruse (pictured above) and look to chase sixth-place Hoffenheim for the last spot in the Europa League. They are still the only team in Europe’s top five leagues not named Paris Saint-Germain to score in every match this season.

FC AUGSBURG vs. VFB STUTTGART (Saturday at 8:30am CT, FS2)

(Matchday 13:  VfB Stuttgart 1-0 FC Augsburg)

Augsburg set the cat amongst the pigeons with a 3-1 away win at Eintracht Frankfurt in their first match under new coach Martin Schmidt. That win moved them seven points clear of Stuttgart in 16th place. Michael Gregoritsch ended a 12-match goalless streak last Sunday while Alfred Finnbogason has scored just once in his last 12. 

Stuttgart need results and need them now if they do not want to play in the relegation playoff—or worse. They are just three points clear of FC Nürnberg in the automatic relegation places and have amassed just two points in their last five matches. Having Santiago Ascacibar suspended for six weeks following his sending off last week against Leverkusen won’t help. 

BAYER LEVERKUSEN vs. FC NÜRNBERG (Saturday at 8:30am, Fox Soccer Plus)

(Matchday 13:  FC Nürnberg 1-1 Bayer Leverkusen)

Kai Havertz celebrated his 100th professional appearance with a goal in Die Werkself’s 1-0 win over Stuttgart. Bayer are still just two points out of sixth. They face a Nürnberg club who have yet to win away this season. Bayer have also not lost to any team currently in the bottom half of the table. 

In fact, Der Club have amassed just three points on the road this season out of a possible 42. A draw against Schalke last week did close the gap to 16th to just three points. However, they have amassed five points in the last three matches to keep the hope that there won’t be an instant return to the Zweite. 

MAINZ 05 vs. FORTUNA DUSSELDORF (Saturday at 8:30am CT, Fox Soccer Matchpass)

(Matchday 13:  Fortuna Dusseldorf 0-1 Mainz)

Mainz can confirm safety by getting a better result against Fortuna than Stuttgart does at Augsburg. This despite losing eight of their last ten matches. Robin Quaison could return to the starting lineup after scoring off the bench last week against Dortmund.

Fortuna are already safe despite a 4-1 defeat to Bayern Munich last week. They have an unlikely chance to finish ninth (eight points adrift of that). Dodi Lukebakio could return to the fold after missing out on the match against Bayern. 


(Matchday 13:  RB Leipzig 2-0 Borussia MG)

The Foals got a much-needed win over Hannover 96 last week and much-needed help thanks to Augsburg that leaves them one point off fourth place Frankfurt. However, their quest will have to continue without Lars Stindl who fractured his calf after just 30 seconds and is out for the season. Raffael will likely deputize in his place. Gladbach are also sweating on the fitness of Nico Elvedi (calf), Denis Zakaria (back), and Christoph Kramer (ankle).

RB Leipzig can move ten points clear of Gladbach and virtually lock their place in the Champions League next season. They have scored 12 goals in their last four matches. Timo Werner has score four in his last five matches. Speaking of five, that’s how many Leipzig are unbeaten on the bounce against Gladbach.

SCHALKE 04 vs. TSG 1899 HOFFENHEIM (Saturday at 1:30pm CT, FS2)

(Matchday 13:  Hoffenheim 1-1 Schalke)

Weston McKennie is set to return for the Royal Blues as they look to steer clear of Stuttgart in the danger zone. They are six points clear of Stuttgart and will need to get points ahead of matches against Dortmund and Leverkusen. 

Hoffenheim are the in-form team at the moment with 13 points out of a possible 15 in the last five matches including winning their last three. They are currently sixth, but just five points out of the top four and were successful with a late push to the top four last season. 


(Matchday 13:  Borussia Dortmund 2-0 Freiburg)

Freiburg’s safety will be confirmed if they defeat Dortmund and if Stuttgart fail to defeat Augsburg the day before. They are however winless in their last four will be without top scorer Nils Petersen who still has a hamstring injury. Luca Waldschmidt is second on the club with eight goals. 

BVB could enter the match four points adrift of Bayern. They had to labor to defeat Mainz last week. At least a draw will confirm Champions League for next season, but a win is virtually a much if they are to end Bayern’s six-year reign at the top. Christian Pulisic is available for selection this weekend after recovering from injury. 

HERTHA BERLIN vs. HANNOVER 96 (Sunday at 11am CT, FS1)

(Matchday 13:  Hannover 96 0-2 Hertha Berlin)

Pal Dardai has announced that he will step down as coach of the Capital Club at season’s end. Both Ondrej Duda and Vedad Ibisevic are back again for Hertha after suspension while Marko Grujic, Jordan Torunarigha, Fabian Lustenberger and Arne Maier are all on the injured list.

Hannover are bottom of the league after eight straight losses. Nine would be a club record and confirm that they would at least be in the relegation playoff. The same goes if Schalke win or if Augsburg avoid defeat against Stuttgart. Relegation could come as early as next week if results go against them. 


(Matchday 13:  Eintracht Frankfurt 1-2 Wolfsburg)

The Wolves enter this weekend two points adrift of sixth place, but need to pass three teams to get there. They came up short against RB Leipzig last week, though their last three losses were against the top three. 

Frankfurt lost their unbeaten streak last Sunday against Augsburg, but got the goals needed against Benfica on Thursday to go through to the Europa League semis on away goals. Before they face Chelsea, they will look to consolidate fourth place as they are a point clear of Gladbach. Jonathan de Guzman will likely deputize for the suspended Gelson Fernandes who was sent off last Sunday. The Eagles have won their last three away matches. 


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