After a – in terms of international breaks – rather eventful two weeks, league football is finally back again.
Things are kicked off (Friday 8:30 pm CEST) by Stuttgart who host dead-last Köln. Stuttgart had a mixed start but they are currently on as many points as matches which is more than often enough to stay in the league and that should be their main goal in this first season back in Germany’s top flight. When the season started, this wasn’t quite Köln’s main goal but after just one point out of seven games, it has to be. Just like at the last matchdays, Köln is desperate for a win to not lose contact to 15th already.
Saturday afternoon (3:30pm) features five interesting matches but the most interesting is probably Jupp Heynckes’ fourth debut on the Bayern bench. In his last season at Bayern they marched through to a triple. That is – however unlikely – still possible this season but to win the most important title which is the Bundesliga title they can’t afford to drop points anymore, especially not against Freiburg because Dortmund have been looking very strong this season and they undoubtedly will pounce on every mistake Bayern makes. The other four matches features 3rd placed Hoffenheim hosting Augsburg, Schalke making the journey to the capital, Mainz and Hamburg clashing heads in what is a match between two teams in a relegation battle. Last but not least Hannover get to see wha Frankfurt are all about.
In the evening (6:30pm) we have the most interesting game of the weekend when Dortmund host Leipzig in what realistically be the first Bundesliga loss for Dortmund. But football isn’t the only important thing surrounding that game. Last time the two teams met in Dortmund it featured some very tasteless banners in the Dortmund end and it ended with Dortmund hooligans chasing after Leipzig fans leading to the Südkurve being closed in their game against Wolfsburg. Let’s just hope for a good game of football and no such things this time.
Talking about disappointing things, Wolfsburg and Leverkusen who meet at 3:30pm on Sunday were the two big disappointments last season. Wolfsburg had to go into the relegation Play-Offs and Leverkusen had to wait until matchday 33 to be save. And both teams didn’t start very well this season with 7 points for Wolfsburg and 8 for Leverkusen so this game could be pointing the way for either team.
In the final game (5:30pm) Bremen look for their first win of the season against Gladbach. Just like for Peter Stöger in Köln, time might be running out for Alexander Nouri in Bremen. There have been some good signs and they have drawn four games but their performance in the Nordderby against Hamburg was nothing to be proud of and they’ll need to improve on that to beat Gladbach and to stay in the league because it’s unlikely they’ll pull off a run with 29 points out of 11 games again.