Bundesliga: Takeaways from Germany’s midweek matches
This midweek was all about Bayern Munich, who will win its eighth-straight Bundesliga title next month unless it suffers a shocking and historic collapse.
Bayern Munich’s 1-0 Tuesday defeat of Borussia Dortmund took the steam out of their Klassiker rivals’ title hopes, and it only got worse for fans wanting the title race to stretch deep into June.
Any club within shouting distance declined to raise a hand in protest, with RB Leipzig and Borussia Monchengladbach drawing lower-half sides and Bayer Leverkusen forgetting how to defend in a blowout home loss to Wolfsburg.
So now a Bayern team which has not lost in 14 matches, winning 13 of them, will need to fail miserably over the final six matches while someone else will need to take all 18 points available to them.
Good luck with that.
Bayern’s six remaining matches were enough to think there would be a title fight if Dortmund at least drew the reigning champs but find the eight dropped points that would allow a perfect BVB to pass them:
Saturday - v. Fortuna Dusseldorf
June 6 - at Bayer Leverkusen
June 13 - v. Gladbach
June 16 - at Werder Bremen
June 20 - v. Freiburg
June 27 - at Wolfsburg
Maybe next year, because it’s incredibly unlikely this year.
Nagelsmann rages as Leipzig blows chance
RB Leipzig won’t have liked Bayern Munich beating Dortmund -- it would’ve likely preferred a draw, but it would’ve liked almost everything else it liked on the scoreboard Tuesday.
So to allow an early goal off a set piece to bottom-half (but admittedly in-form) Hertha Berlin and then toss away the good fortune of taking a 2-1 lead despite being down a man is just terrible.
This is a Leipzig side which defends so well and entered the match week having allowed the league’s fewest goals.
Leipzig has a manageable run into the final day aside from a Dortmund visit. Nagelsmann’s boys otherwise face Paderborn, Koln, Fortuna Dusseldorf, Augsburg, and an uneven Hoffenheim. They had some hope of catching Bayern and gaining sharpness for the Champions League, but only the latter looks likely after dropping two points to Hertha
Player of the Week
Austrian youth international Christoph Baumgartner has been moved all over the pitch this season, but he was a wizard in the final third as an attacking midfielder.
Hoffenheim rebounded from a terrible first two matches since the return from the coronavirus pause to beat Koln 3-1 on Wednesday, red cards going to each team.
Baumgartner did his damage early in scoring twice and adding an assist in building a 3-0 lead. He had two key passes, was four-of-four in take-ons, and won eight of 11 duels over 77 minutes.
Still 20 until Aug. 1, Baumgartner six goals and four assists in his first Bundesliga season.
And he’s got audacity for days. Look at this drag and drop assist to Steven Zuber.
Baku (Mainz) -- Boateng (Bayern) -- Pongracic (Wolfsburg) -- Davies (Bayern)
Grujic (Hertha) -- Kimmich (Bayern) -- Arnold (Wolfsburg)
Baumgartner (Hoffenheim) -- Grifo (Freiburg)
- Croatian center back Marin Pongracic was one of several big names to leave Salzburg in January, and the big man delivered for Wolfsburg in a big way with two goals in a 4-1 win over Bayer, also making four clearances, blocking two shots, intercepting two passes and winning four of six duels.
- Fortuna needed a win in a bad way, and two come back against Schalke has to feel good. Veteran striker Rouwen Hennings turned back the clock and scored his 12th of the season in the win and first since before Christmas.
- Gladbach’s 0-0 draw with Werder Bremen would’ve been worse if not for goalkeeper Yann Sommer. Bremen forced seven saves out of the veteran, who passed at 83 percent and completed 8 of 13 long balls.
[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]
Borussia Dortmund 0-1 Bayern Munich -- RECAP | Kimmich reacts
Werder Bremen 0-0 Borussia Monchengladbach -- RECAP
Eintracht Frankfurt 3-3 Freiburg -- RECAP
Bayer Leverkusen 1-4 Wolfsburg -- RECAP
RB Leipzig 2-2 Hertha Berlin -- RECAP
Augsburg 0-0 Paderborn -- RECAP
Union Berlin 1-1 Mainz -- RECAP
Hoffenheim 3-1 Koln -- RECAP
Fortuna Dusseldorf 2-1 Schalke -- RECAP | WATCH: McKennie’s goal
WEEK 29 SCHEDULE (Full season schedule here)
Freiburg v. Bayer Leverkusen -- 2:30 p.m. ET Friday
Mainz v. Hoffenheim -- 9:30 a.m. ET Saturday
Wolfsburg v. Eintracht Frankfurt -- 9:30 a.m. ET Saturday
Schalke v. Werder Bremen -- 9:30 a.m. ET Saturday
Hertha Berlin v. Augsburg -- 9:30 a.m. ET Saturday
Bayern Munich v. Fortuna Dusseldorf -- 12:30 p.m. ET Saturday
Borussia Monchengladbach v. Union Berlin -- 9:30 a.m. ET Sunday
Paderborn v. Borussia Dortmund -- Noon ET Saturday
Koln v. RB Leipzig -- 2:30 p.m. ET Monday
|FC Schalke 04||28||9||10||9||34||45||-11||5-6-3||4-4-6||37|
|Hertha BSC Berlin||28||9||8||11||41||50||-9||4-3-7||5-5-4||35|
|1. FC Köln||28||10||4||14||44||52||-8||6-3-5||4-1-9||34|
|1. FC Union Berlin||28||9||4||15||33||48||-15||6-2-6||3-2-9||31|
|FSV Mainz 05||28||8||4||16||37||61||-24||4-2-8||4-2-8||28|