Bundesliga - The battle for international places
In our last article we described the starting position in the relegation fight in the Bundesliga. In this article we would like to examine in more detail the fight for the international places, which is also very exciting and difficult to predict, because even the current tenth place in the table is likely to still have hopes for qualification for the Europa League. In addition, there is a certain inconsistency in some clubs in terms of performance.
We start from the bottom up and start with the table tenth:
Borussia Mönchengladbach. The Gladbachers are basically in the process of completely messing up a really good season. After coach M. Rose announced that he would leave the club and join the other Borussia from Dortmund, nothing went. From the six subsequent point games followed only a meagre point with derby defeat. Too little for a team that wants to qualify for international business. In addition, the DFB-Pokal and the Champions League were eliminated. In the end, however, there is a small glimmer of light. The last game was won 3-0 at Schalke. However, this is already taken for granted these days. The gap to 6th place is currently 4 points. This is still within the realm of possibility of catching up, even with regard to the rest of the programme. This is against mostly doable opponents. The duels against Freiburg and Stuttgart, which can also hope for Europe, are likely to be particularly decisive.
At Leo-Vegas there is currently a 6.50 for Mönchengladbach to finish in the top 6 at the end of the season.
VfB Stuttgart, which is also 4 points behind Borussia Mönchengladbach in 6th place, is currently in ninth place. Despite the 4-0 defeat in Munich, in which one was almost the whole game one more man, VfB Stuttgart plays a stable season, which could be rewarded in the end with a European place. Rarely has it been as quiet around VfB Stuttgart in recent years as it is now. From the outside, the VfB currently looks very confident, down-to-earth and, above all, cleared. That had not always been the case in previous seasons. But a lot of things have been done right this season. If you look at the rest of the programme, qualifying for the Europa League could be difficult. Borussia Dortmund, RB Leipzig and VfL Wolfsburg are among the players waiting. However, there are also opponents from lower table regions and the VfB also plays against the direct competition of Union Berlin and Borussia Mönchengladbach.
Probably due to the rest of the program, the bookmakers see VfB Stuttgart as an outsider in the race for the top 6 Leo Vegas offers a 10.00 odds on the corresponding bet.
8th place is occupied by SC Freiburg. The Breisgauers are a phenomenon year after year and it is always impressive to look at what the people of Freiburg achieve with relatively small resources. Currently they are only 3 points away from sixth place and qualification for the Europa League seems possible. Especially if you look at the rest of the programme, because all the relegation candidates are waiting here until Mainz. After the international break, Mönchengladbach is the only direct competitor waiting. The Freiburgers still have to play against Bayern in the last two games and go away in Frankfurt, but who knows… Maybe bayern are already German champions by then and want to spare a few of their players, as has been seen time and again in recent years. The bookmakers see the starting position for SC Freiburg differently.
Here Leo-Vegas again offers the highest rate with a 12.00. This is likely to be revised downwards.
In 7th place is completely surprising Union Berlin and currently only 2 points behind in 6th place. However, the fact that Union finishes in the top six at the end of the season will be a difficult undertaking, because of all the teams, Union is likely to have the toughest remaining programme. They play against Bayern, Dortmund, Wolfsburg and RB Leipzig. In addition, there are also games against the direct competition from Stuttgart and Leverkusen.
The betting providers agree on this. Union currently gets odds of between 7.00 and 8.00 for being in sixth place at the end of the season.
The first international place currently belongs to Bayer Leverkusen. Because of the recent performances shown, one can already ask the question of what is actually going on there. The Werkself has played a great round and is to be squandered in the return round. Against relegation candidate Hertha BSC they were really without chances and had lost the game early. At home they lost to Arminia Bielefeld. In the Europa League they lost 2 times to Bern and in the cup followed the exit at Regionalligaist Rot-Weiß-Essen. Of the last 11 Bundesliga games, only 3 have been won and 6 have been lost. That is actually not enough. Leverkusen have to pull themselves together, otherwise it will be really tight again. They are still playing against Union Berlin, who of course still want to crown their season. A mixed rest program awaits the Leverkuseners. After the international break, schalke must be re-confident before the decisive phase.
It is a little surprising that the bookmakers see Leverkusen as good as in the top six. Leo-Vegas offers a 1.25 quota, which is the highest rate. On the basis of the recent performances, one might have expected that the whole thing would be more balanced in the odds, but could also be related to the fact that teams such as Freiburg, Union and Stuttgart usually have nothing to do with the European places.
By the way, Leverkusen gets a quota of 8.00 for qualification in the top 4. However, this seems hopeless at 7 points behind.
Dortmund, currently in fifth place, are still in the champions league qualifiers. This will be particularly important in order to be able to keep key players, as they would only remain in Dortmund if they were to play in the Champions League. It is currently 4 points behind Eintracht Frankfurt, who of course want to claim 4th place for themselves.
Immediately after the international break there is a direct duel.
For BVB, there are odds between 1.60 and 1.75 for them to end up in the top 4.
The Frankfurters are listed between 1.45 and 1.68. At both clubs there is a big discrepancy between the odds of the different betting providers.
We don’t need to talk much about VfL Wolfsburg. It’s just a matter of whether they can qualify directly for the Champions League or have to make the play-offs. However, since the betting providers only have the possibility that the club is in the top four at the end of the season, the question of whether they will manage to be in the top 4 in the end has almost been settled, because in 5th place there is a whopping 8 points advantage with 21 points still to be awarded. One has to bear in mind that Wolfsburg still play against Frankfurt, Bayern, Dortmund and Leipzig, but the Wolves are so solid that they can certainly get one or two points out of here. The competition must also do its homework. The highest rate that Wolfsburg end up in the top 4 is 1.30 and can be found in sportwetten.de.
Finally, after the international break, there will be a championship duel between Bayern and Leipzig. Here the championship is either decided early or it becomes really exciting again. Currently, Bayern have a 4-point lead over Leipzig and always seem to be there when it matters. This has always been an excellent example of Bavaria in recent years. The bookmakers at least see Bayern favoured in the battle for the championship and concede Leipzig virtually no chance. Bayern don’t even get a 1.05 quota for the title, while Leipzig’s odds on the championship are around 15. With a Leipzig victory after the international break, this could change drastically.
Overall, the struggle to calculate the international places is difficult, as shown by the different allocation of quotas by the individual bookmakers. The match between Leipzig and Bayern after the international break is likely to be particularly interesting. There could be a preliminary decision. But it could also be really exciting again.