Bundesliga 2020/21 Relegation Predictions, Odds & Picks
- Two new clubs will be taking part in the top flight of German soccer this season
- Two teams will go down automatically and another will be involved in a relegation play-off
- Some big names in the Bundesliga could be vulnerable unless they are careful
Bundesliga Relegation Odds
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Bundesliga Relegation Predictions and Picks
Paderborn showed last season that making the step up from the second tier to the top table is not easy. Having won promotion in 2019, the club from North Rhine-Westphalia struggled to compete all year and ultimately finished 16 points adrift of guaranteed safety. Arminia Bielefeld will be tipped to endure a similar sort of campaign, but there is reason to believe they can survive.
Stuttgart may be the bigger name but they could be in greater danger of suffering an immediate return to the 2. Bundesliga – back them to fall through the trapdoor. And while Werder Bremen should be able to put the nightmare of last season behind them, Augsburg could succumb to a bottom-two finish.
How to Watch Bundesliga
|What||2020/21 Bundesliga season|
|When||18 September 2020 – 22 May 2021|
|How to Watch||Watch on ESPN+ here!|
Stuttgart and Arminia Bielefeld Looking to Survive in the First Season Back
Arminia Bielefeld took the 2. Bundesliga by storm last season. The last decade or so has been turbulent for the Blues, who fell out of the Bundesliga in 2009 and later dropped into the third tier. They also ran into financial difficulties and were forced to sell their stadium, although there were a few bright spots along the way – most notably a run to the semi-finals of the DFB-Pokal in 2014/15. However, Arminia can be said to have put their troubles behind them after finishing 10 points clear at the top of the second flight last time out.
Managed by the 60-year-old Uwe Neuhaus, Arminia lost only two of 34 games last term. Their lack of recent Bundesliga experience is part of what makes them the bookmakers’ favorites to go down, but Arminia will be confident of defying the odds. They were difficult to beat the last term and did not concede too many goals; while they will, of course, be more vulnerable against a higher class of opposition in the Bundesliga, they showed enough last term to suggest they will cling on in the top division.
Stuttgart are a bigger name than Arminia, which explains why the bookmakers are more confident of their survival chances. They escaped from the 2. Bundesliga at the first time of asking, having suffered demotion into it in 2018/19. Some fans will be hoping for a mid-table finish given the club’s Bundesliga pedigree, but a failure to tighten up could prove costly – Stuttgart lost almost a third of their league games last year, and that was at a lower level. Do not bank on them retaining their top-flight status.
Union Berlin, Werder Bremen, Mainz and Augsburg Tipped to Struggle
Union Berlin stayed up last season following their promotion the previous term. In the end, it was a more comfortable campaign than many expected: Union finished 11th, closer in points to the European spots than the relegation zone. However, second-season syndrome could bite this time around, and the continued absence of supporters has the potential to affect Union – whose vociferous home crowd is a major feature of the club – more than others.
Werder Bremen survived by the skin of their teeth in 2019/20, finishing one point clear of automatic demotion and then winning their relegation play-off against Heidenheim on away goals. It was an unexpectedly tumultuous year for a club that finished eighth in 2018/19, and it is hard to see Werder being quite as bad again this season.
Mainz have finished in the bottom half of the Bundesliga for four seasons on the bounce, and some believe they will eventually finish in the bottom two. They were a boom or bust type of team for much of 2019/20, with each of their first 21 fixtures ending in victory or defeat. Their defense was a particular concern, and it will be interesting to see what new head coach Achim Beierlorzer brings to the table this term. It might not be pretty, but Mainz should have enough to stay up once more.
Augsburg might not. They finished 15th last time out, five points are clear of Werder Bremen in the relegation play-off spot and six in advance of the bottom two. They won only nine games in 2019/20, a figure bettered by all but Werder and the relegated duo of Paderborn and Fortuna Dusseldorf, and manager Heiko Herrlich has little experience at this level – he did steer Bayer Leverkusen to a fifth-place finish in 2017/18, but was then sacked a few months later after the club lost faith in his tactics. It is no surprise that Augsburg is among the favorites for the drop.
Koln, Freiburg and Schalke Could Get Dragged Into Dogfight
Things are rarely dull at Schalke, who slipped from sixth on matchday 25 to 12th by the end of that campaign. It was a torrid end to the season for David Wagner’s men, who failed to win any of their last 16 games, and there is understandable concern that they could carry that form into the new season. However, across a 34-match campaign Schalke should have more than enough quality to avoid a dogfight.
Freiburg was the Bundesliga’s surprise package last term, narrowly missing out on European soccer but finishing a respectable eighth. A drop-off should be expected this time around, but there is little reason to believe Christian Streich’s side will be involved in a relegation battle.
Koln are in greater danger of the drop. Eight of their 10 victories last season came in a three-month period around the turn of the year, and they ended the campaign on a 10-game winless streak. Koln will likely spend much of 2020/21 looking over their shoulder.