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|Match Result and Total Goals||Odds|
|RB Leipzig and Over 2.5||+135|
|RB Leipzig and Under 2.5||+475|
|Bayer Leverkusen and Over 2.5||+425|
|Bayer Leverkusen and Under 2.5||+1000|
Xabi Alonso has struggled to stop his side from conceding with regularity, so this is unlikely to be a low-scoring affair.
Back RB Leipzig to beat Bayer Leverkusen to win and over 2.5 goals. (+135)
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A poor start to the season left RB Leipzig with considerable work to do, but the club acted decisively in concluding that Domenico Tedesco was no longer the right man for the job. The former Schalke boss was dismissed in early September after overseeing just one win in his team’s first five outings of the Bundesliga season.
Many felt the sacking was harsh. After all, Tedesco did a fantastic job at the Red Bull Arena the last term. Chosen as the successor to Jesse Marsch after another poor opening to a campaign, Tedesco inherited a side that was in the bottom half of the table in December and proceeded to guide them to a top-four finish and qualification for the Champions League. Leipzig also won their first major trophy on his watch, beating Freiburg in the final of the DFB-Pokal in May.
Despite the on-field success, Tedesco’s relationship with his superiors was always strained, and that no doubt played a part in his dismissal last month. Not everything has been plain sailing for his replacement, Marco Rose, but Leipzig are on the rise. The club will argue that making the change early gave Leipzig the best possible chance to turn the season around before the 2022 World Cup.
The goal now will be to climb into the top four prior to next month’s pause for the tournament in Qatar. A four-match unbeaten run leaves Leipzig in eighth going into the weekend, with a four-point gap to Eintracht Frankfurt in the final Champions League qualification spot.
A 3-3 draw with Augsburg last time out felt like a win for Leipzig, who scored in the 89th and 90th minutes to rescue a point at the WWK Arena. We could be in store for another entertaining encounter involving Rose’s side this weekend.
Bayer Leverkusen had the same aim as Leipzig before a ball had been kicked this season: qualify for next year’s edition of the Champions League and perhaps even finish as runners-up behind Bayern Munich, the overwhelming favorites to win the Bundesliga title with the best online sportsbooks.
Things have not gone to plan. Leverkusen, who finished third last season with a five-point deficit to Borussia Dortmund in second, head into game week 12 just one point outside the division’s relegation play-off spot.
Gerardo Seoane paid the ultimate price for the club’s poor start to the season at the beginning of this month. The final straw was a 4-0 thumping by Bayern which left Leverkusen second-bottom of the standings with just one win from their first eight matches.
Xabi Alonso was chosen as his successor, despite his lack of managerial experience beyond a three-year spell in charge of Real Sociedad’s B team in Spain. His new side thrashed Schalke 4-0 in his first match in charge, but subsequent clashes with Eintracht Frankfurt (a 5-1 defeat) and Wolfsburg (a 2-2 draw) yielded just a solitary point.
European soccer might already be out of reach for Leverkusen, whose primary objective right now should be to climb away from the bottom three and into mid-table. But with games against Leipzig and Union Berlin next up, things could get worse before they get better.
Although Leipzig have stuttered on a few occasions in 2022/23, their home record is pretty strong. They are yet to lose at the Red Bull Arena, under either Tedesco or Rose and have taken 13 points from a possible 15 in front of their own fans. No team in the division has a better points-per-game record at home.
Leipzig are particularly strong in attack when playing in familiar environs. Only Bayern can match their return of 14 goals at home; the fewest Leipzig have scored in a single match at the Red Bull Arena is two. That does not bode particularly well for Leverkusen, who have conceded 23 goals to date - the third-most in the division.
Leverkusen’s squad contains plenty of talent but their confidence, understandably, is on the floor and needs rebuilding. A trip to Leipzig this weekend will not be easy in the slightest, and we fancy Rose’s side to heap more misery on their visitors.
Pair a home win with over 2.5 goals. Four of Leipzig's five home games this term have featured at least three goals, as have Leverkusen’s last four matches at any ground.
|Teams||RB Leipzig vs Bayer Leverkusen|
|Location||Red Bull Arena, Leipzig, Germany|
|Time||Saturday, 29 October 2022, 9.30 AM EDT|
|How to watch||ESPN+|
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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