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Revenge will be the primary motivation for in-form Wolfsburg when it hosts out-of-form Hertha in the final match of the 22nd round of German Bundesliga games on Sunday.
It was Hertha that ended Wolfsburg’s amazing streak of 30 German Bundesliga games scoring at least one goal when the Berlin-based team won this season’s reverse league fixture 1-0 in September. Since then Wolfsburg has scored in each of its 16 German Bundesliga matches, winning 12, drawing three and losing one as it has marched up the league ladder to sit in second position, eight points behind Bayern Munchen and eight points ahead of Monchengladbach. Life is good for Wolfsburg and its supporters, with UEFA Champions League participation on the horizon regardless of how the Wolves fare in the remainder of the UEFA Europa League tournament.
The outlook is not so bright for Hertha and its fans. Since Hertha defeated Wolfsburg 1-0 five months ago it has accrued 16 points from its 16 German Bundesliga games, which is the form of a relegation candidate. Hertha is bottom but one on the German Bundesliga ladder and, whereas Wolfsburg is top of the division’s six-match standings, Pal Dardai’s side is at the foot of the pile, firing blanks in four of its last five games and losing 0-2 at home to Freiburg last weekend.
On what is another German Bundesliga card that does not make a great deal of appeal from a punting perspective, Wolfsburg is the best match bet at odds of 9/25 1.36 -278 0.36 -2.78 0.36 with Betfred and WilliamHill.
It will be interesting to see how Hamburg reacts after being thrashed 0-8 by Bayern Munchen. It gets easier for Hamburg because its next German Bundesliga assignment is a home game versus a Monchengladbach team that will be backing up from playing Sevilla in a UEFA Europa League match in Spain fewer than 72 hours earlier. One cannot help thinking that Hamburg will play cautiously for fear of being smashed to pieces in consecutive German Bundesliga games and that Monchengladbach will not be operating at 100 per cent, either. One could not back Hertha and one would prefer not to back Monchengladbach at favourite odds so the draw is what leaps off the coupon.
Many bookmakers, including BetVictor and Ladbrokes, are offering odds of 12/5 3.40 +240 2.40 2.40 -0.42 about the German Bundesliga match between Hertha and Monchengladbach ending all square. If you concur that the draw is a runner then you may be interested in dutching 0-0 and 1-1 to obtain even better odds of about 31/10 4.10 +310 3.10 3.10 -0.32 . Monchengladbach is the better of the two sides and its 10 German Bundesliga games have had a total of 15 goals.
Like Monchengladbach, Bayern Munchen will be backing up from a midweek UEFA competition engagement but it is really hard to see anything other than a win for Josep Guardiola’s team when it visits Paderborn on Saturday. The reverse German Bundesliga fixture resulted in a 4-0 victory for Bayern Munchen and it should be safe to include the ladder leader at odds of 9/50 1.18 -556 0.18 -5.56 0.18 with WilliamHill for three more points, while Boylesports are likely to do some business at its odds of 91/100 1.91 -110 0.91 -1.10 0.91 for an away win to nil.
With regards to German Bundesliga exotics, the best play is backing Bremen to score a goal in its away date with Schalke on Saturday. Bremen has embraced Viktor Skripnik’s positive attitude, racing up the German Bundesliga ladder thanks to its free scoring under its new coach. Bremen has scored 25 goals in its 12 German Bundesliga since Skripnik succeeded Robin Dutt, netting at least twice in 10 of those matches and only once failing to get on the scoresheet. Boylesports and Ladbrokes are listing odds of 1.40 that Bremen scores versus a Schalke side that has a midweek engagement.
Bayern to beat Paderborn to nil
21st February 14:30 GMT
Odds: 91/100 1.91 -110 0.91 -1.10 0.91
Whereto Bet: Boylesports