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|Match Result and Total Goals||Odds|
|Borussia Dortmund and Over 1.5||+280
|Borussia Dortmund and Under 1.5||+1900
|Bayern Munich and Over 1.5||+100
|Bayern Munich and Under 1.5||+1400
The strength of these teams’ forward lines means this is unlikely to be a low-scoring encounter, and Bayern’s better balance should bring them all three points.
Back Bayern Munich to win and over 1.5 goals (+100)
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In the early weeks of the season, it looked as though Bayern Munich would run away with the Bundesliga title. After being held to a 1-1 draw by Borussia Monchengladbach on the opening weekend, Julian Nagelsmann’s side proceeded to win each of their next five league games by an aggregate scoreline of 22-4. At times in recent years, Bayern have won the title despite not being among the strongest sides in Europe. They certainly look to be one of the best teams the continent has to offer in 2021/22.
Yet for all that Bayern have produced some dazzling displays at home and abroad, their lead at the summit of the standings is rather slender: after 13 rounds of fixtures, Bayern are just one point clear of Borussia Dortmund. With the two teams set to meet on matchday 14, the champions could find themselves in second place by the end of the weekend. Dortmund do not look quite as formidable as Bayern, but they are very much in the title race for now.
Nagelsmann’s charges have shown a glimmer of vulnerability in recent weeks. In their first game back after the November international break, Bayern lost 2-1 to Augsburg. They returned to winning ways last time out, but a 1-0 victory over Arminia Bielefeld was not altogether convincing. Bayern played pretty well but the only goal of the game did not arrive until the 71st minute, before which there was some concern that they would be unable to make the breakthrough.
Bayern look like one of the best four teams in Europe right now, alongside Chelsea, Liverpool, and Manchester City. But a one-point lead at the top of the Bundesliga is too close for comfort, and it is by no means a foregone conclusion that they will win the title this season.
Borussia Dortmund have lost three games this season, but their perfect record in their other nine matches has allowed them to stay hot on Bayern’s heels. For that Marco Rose deserves credit. He has had to make do without Erling Haaland for a large chunk of the campaign, while Jadon Sancho was sold to Manchester United in the summer. Dortmund’s defensive deficiencies have not been addressed, but Rose has found a way to keep pace with Bayern in the first third of the season.
Remaining within touching distance of the 31-time German champion will not be easy. The underlying statistics show that Bayern have been much more dominant than Dortmund so far.
They have a cumulative xG (expected goals) of 37.1 to Dortmund’s 25.7, which shows they are creating more chances than their closest title rivals. They are also conceding fewer opportunities, as evidenced by respective xGA (expected goals against) figures of 10.7 vs 18.3. It is that second number that should worry Dortmund most, as eight other clubs plus Bayern are conceding fewer chances than them.
Equally the head-to-head record between Germany’s big two does not make for pleasant reading for those of a Dortmund persuasion. Bayern have won five league games in a row against BVB, as well as eight of the last nine. There have been heavy losses too, including a 6-0, a 4-0 and a 5-0.
Bayern’s dominance in head-to-head matches illustrates two things. First, they have simply been a stronger side than Dortmund in recent seasons. There is no shame in that for BVB. Bayern are a much wealthier club and it stands to reason that they should have the edge whenever the pair lock horns.
Secondly, though, it points to a certain psychological shortcoming on Dortmund’s part. Whereas Bayern seem to relish these games, Dortmund tend to fear them. The one-sided nature of some of the duels – as demonstrated by the aforementioned scorelines – goes beyond straightforward superiority. Dortmund have not been able to shake off that inferiority complex when they face the kings of the German game.
In purely soccer terms, Bayern’s balance between attack and defense could be the crucial factor here. Dortmund have kept only one clean sheet all season and have relied on outscoring their opponents to pick up wins. That can be a successful strategy when you are facing Arminia Bielefeld or Stuttgart, but relying on a we-will-score-one-more-than-you policy is fraught with risk when Bayern are the opposition.
Dortmund have the opportunity to make a statement of intent here, but this weekend’s Der Klassiker could follow the recent pattern. Back Bayern to win and more than 1.5 goals, a bet which would have paid out in four of the last five league meetings between Germany’s big two.
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|Borussia Dortmund vs Bayern Munich Information|
|Teams||Borussia Dortmund vs Bayern Munich|
|Location||Signal Iduna Park, Dortmund, Germany|
|Time||Saturday, 4 December 2021, 12.30 PM EDT|
|How to watch||ESPN|
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Greg Lea is a freelance soccer journalist from London. He is the former editor of The Set Pieces, and has contributed to the Guardian, FourFourTwo, and ESPN. A Crystal Palace fan, he is a long-time subscriber to the belief that it's the taking part that counts. Email: [email protected]More info on Greg Lea
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