The Bundesliga season is into its final third and the top of the table is incredibly tight. Hertha Berlin hold a four point advantage over four teams level on 42 points, a pack lead by Bayern Munich who are hot favourites to claim their fourth title in five years.
Bayern have stuttered in recent weeks, losing three of their last six, but punters trust their pedigree at this stage of the season and they look like they are ready to turn a corner. They hammered Hannover 5-1 last time out and also hit five against Sporting Lisbon in their Champions League last 16 first leg.
This time last season Jürgen Klinsmann’s outfit started a run that saw them claim 26 points from the 33 available until the end of the season and it is tempting to expect something similar this time around. They travel to 14th placed VfL Bochum and should be backed to win by two clear goals as an away win banker in this round of German soccer bets.
The home banker should be Wolfsburg, the division’s form team. They have won their last five league matches, which has lifted them into the band of teams on 42 points. They have won 10 and drawn one of their 11 home games this term.
Wolfsburg host eighth-placed Schalke 04 in the weekend’s Friday night match, but I fancy a 1-1 draw, which should provide plenty of value.
Leaders Hertha welcome Bayer Leverkusen and should be backed to maintain their good form. The visitors have won one of their last seven but remain five points off second place, a sign of how tightly-bunched the top eight are.
Hertha show no signs of nerves as they chase their first ever Bundesliga title, although they need to tighten up a defence that has not kept a clean sheet in the six games since the resumption after the winter break.
They might also be concerned that they over-rely on the in-form Andriy Voronin, who has seven goals in his last five games, but they should maintain their dream run this weekend, with a 2-1 scoreline the outcome I favour.
Written by Philip Oliver, a professional sports writer who blogs about European soccer gambling at Betfair.