Bundesliga 2020/21 Top Four Finish Predictions, Odds & Picks
- Bayern Munich are sure of a place but the remaining three spots are up for grabs
- Borussia Dortmund are RB Leipzig are favorites but must remain alert
- Bayer Leverkusen and Borussia Monchengladbach could face more competition this term
Bundesliga Top-Four Finish Odds
Odds taken 15 September 2020 from DraftKings
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Bundesliga Top-Four Finish Predictions and Picks
The Champions League is the pinnacle of European soccer and the place where every team wants to be. Qualification via the Bundesliga comes through a top-four finish, and it will be interesting to see who wins that race over the next eight months.
Bayern Munich will almost certainly qualify, so we have not assessed their chances here – for more on the champions, take a look at our title winners article. Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig should join the reigning champions in the top four, and it is worth backing Borussia Monchengladbach to join them once more. To boost value, consider a double involving Gladbach and either Dortmund or Leipzig – or all three if you want even better odds.
How to Watch Bundesliga
|What||2020/21 Bundesliga season|
|When||18 September 2020 – 22 May 2021|
|How to Watch||Watch on ESPN+ here!|
Dortmund and Leipzig Have Margin for Error in Top-Four Battle
Neither Borussia Dortmund nor RB Leipzig will be thinking about the top four going into the new season. Both clubs will have their eyes set on a title challenge, even though they will readily acknowledge that Bayern Munich is once again overwhelming favorites to lift the trophy. Yet while Dortmund and Leipzig each spent the vast majority of last season in the Champions League places, they ultimately finished just six and three points clear of the fifth spot respectively. Lucien Favre and Julian Nagelsmann should not take anything for granted.
Having said that, it would be a huge shock if Dortmund failed to make it given the talent at their disposal. In Jadon Sancho and Erling Haaland, they have two of the most talented young attackers in world soccer, while Thomas Meunier is an astute addition at the back and Jude Bellingham an exciting one in the middle of the park. Favre’s side tightened up their defense in the second half of the last term, and the forward line has the potential to overwhelm many of their opponents in the Bundesliga. The title might be a bridge too far, but BVB should have little trouble qualifying for the Champions League.
RB Leipzig might not find a top-four finish quite as straightforward, although they too will be confident of ending the campaign among the division’s leading quartet for the third season in a row. Timo Werner, who notched 28 goals in the Bundesliga last term and six more in other competitions, has departed for Chelsea, but new signing Hwang Hee-chan should be able to shoulder some of the scoring burdens. Leipzig’s high-energy style will probably propel them into the Champions League once again, but the loss of Werner means they are by no means guaranteed a top-four spot.
Borussia Monchengladbach and Bayer Leverkusen Locked Horns Last Term
Borussia Monchengladbach edged out Bayer Leverkusen in the race for the top four in 2019/20, ultimately finishing two points clear to book their place in Europe’s premier competition. It was a good achievement for Marco Rose in his debut campaign at the helm, although some Gladbach fans felt a tinge of disappointment at finishing fourth having been top of the table after matchday 14 and in the top two at the midway point of the season.
Still, Gladbach was never likely to mount a sustained title tilt last time out, and there is reason to believe they could challenge for the top three this term. Rose has kept his squad intact and, after a full season of learning his methods, there should be greater coherence and continuity this time around. The lack of a single prolific scorer need not be a concern as long as the club’s attacking players continue to share the goals around – Marcus Thuram, Lars Stindl, and Alassane Plea all got into double figures last season.
A disappointing start to 2019/20 saw Bayer Leverkusen fail to win six of their opening 10 fixtures, which left them playing catch-up from the get-go. Bayer made a good go of a top-four push in the end, but that slow start proved costly. They will be keen to avoid making the same mistake this time around, but the loss of Kai Havertz to Chelsea is a major blow. And while Peter Bosz’s proactive style of play can yield thrilling soccer and positive results, it also has the potential to backfire – as Borussia Dortmund fans can attest to.
Wolfsburg, Hertha Berlin and Hoffenheim Are the Best-Placed Outsiders
The fight for fourth was a two-horse race last season, but Bayer Leverkusen and Borussia Monchengladbach might face stronger competition in 2020/21. Wolfsburg will hope to mount a challenge, but they must become more reliable and consistent – something they struggled with last season. For example, a nine-game unbeaten run to start the campaign gave way to a sequence in which they lost seven in 10 matches.
Hertha Berlin could also be in the mix. They went through four managers in a turbulent campaign in 2019/20 but should benefit from a more settled set up this year, with Bruno Labbadia picking up where he left off since taking charge in April. They too were prone to bouts of inconsistency, winning back-to-back games just three times all season, but they have made important steps to bring the average age of the squad down.
Hoffenheim cannot be ruled out of the race either. The club has continually punched above its weight in recent times and finished sixth last term despite the departure of Nagelsmann as manager. Now led by Sebastian Hoeness, they will need to increase their attacking output if they are to finish in the top four this season.