Wolfsburg vs Borussia Dortmund: Predictions & Odds
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- Borussia Dortmund was superb in its demolition of Schalke last time out
- Wolfsburg also resumed its season with a win, overcoming Augsburg
- The home team will fancy its chances of avoiding defeat despite Dortmund’s attacking excellence
|What||Wolfsburg vs Borussia Dortmund|
|Where||Volkswagen Arena, Wolfsburg, Germany|
|When||Saturday, 23 May 2020, 09:30 AM EST|
|How to watch||Stream live on DraftKings, Fox Sports, Fox Deportes|
Any concerns that it would take Borussia Dortmund a little while to get back in the groove were emphatically blown away against Schalke last weekend. Dortmund dismantled its arch-rival with ease, running out 4-0 winners at Signal Iduna Park to remain in the title race.
RB Leipzig and Borussia Monchengladbach are also in with a shout of finishing top of the table, but Dortmund is most likely challenger to Bayern Munich’s crown. Lucien Favre’s side has now scored 72 goals in 26 games this season, and it is that attacking potency which has raised hopes of BVB winning its first title since 2012.
Wolfsburg’s ambitions are not quite as grand, but they too are in a promising position going into matchday 27. A hard-fought 2-1 victory over Augsburg last weekend means that the Wolves currently occupy the final Europa League qualification spot, a place in the table that five other sides covet.
Many have scoffed at the idea that it is possible for a team’s form to continue after a three-month absence from the action, but it is interesting to note that the six teams that triumphed last weekend either won or drew their previous game in March. Wolfsburg was one of them and has now gone seven Bundesliga matches without defeat.
Wolfsburg vs Borussia Dortmund Odds
|Wolfsburg vs Borussia Dortmund||Odds|
|Borussia Dortmund win||-137|
Odds taken from DraftKings, May 23.
Dortmund eased to a 3-0 victory over Wolfsburg in the first game between these sides. That was one of 14 games in which Favre’s men have found the net at least three times, an extraordinary record that no Bundesliga rival can better this season.
The problem for Dortmund has come at the other end of the field. Granted, the strength of the team’s attack can make up for most of their defensive deficiencies, and it would be a gross exaggeration to say that BVB is inept when it comes to keeping the ball out of its own net.
However, what is true is that every other member of the top six – including this weekend’s opponent – has conceded fewer goals than Dortmund. That will give Wolfsburg hope of achieving a positive result, although the host may ultimately have to settle for a draw rather than a win.
Dortmund’s Attack Is Sizzling and Difficult to Stop
Dortmund delivered the performance of the weekend when they dismantled Schalke at Signal Iduna Park. The display was even more impressive when you consider that Jadon Sancho began the game on the bench and did not enter the fray until the 79th minute.
Sancho is one of the brightest young prospects in European soccer, so it speaks volumes that Dortmund barely missed him last Saturday. Erling Haaland, another prodigious talent, led the line tremendously, while Thorgan Hazard and Julian Brandt were magnificent in supporting roles.
Haaland’s form since joining Dortmund in the January transfer window is remarkable. In 12 appearances in all competitions, he has found the net 13 times. Of those dozen appearances, only eight have come from the start of matches.
It will not be easy for Wolfsburg to keep him quiet this weekend, and excessive focus on the Norwegian center-forward would leave the likes of Brandt and Hazard with additional time and space. Indeed, it is the multi-pronged nature of Dortmund’s attack that makes it such a threat to opposing defenses.
Wolfsburg is a Tough Nut to Crack and Will Make Life Difficult for BVB
But if any team is equipped to halt the Dortmund juggernaut, it may well be Wolfsburg. Oliver Glasner has fashioned a discipline, diligent, and well-organized team that is difficult to break down. His 4-2-3-1 formation allows Wolfsburg to pack the center of the pitch and deny opponents space between the lines.
It has worked well so far this season. Wolfsburg owes its position in the top six to its defensive record: 31 goals conceded in 26 games, the joint-fourth best figure in the division. By contrast Wolfsburg has scored just 36 times, exactly half of Dortmund’s total.
Glasner’s side has kept seven clean sheets in 2019/20, although an eighth will probably be beyond them this weekend. Nevertheless, Wolfsburg is better positioned than most Bundesliga sides to make life difficult for one of Europe’s foremost attacking forces.
The First Goal Could Be Key to Determining the Outcome
If Dortmund score first at the Volkswagen Arena, Wolfsburg will be forced to come out of its shell in search of an equalizer. That would in turn open up space for Dortmund on the counter-attack, a situation that Hazard, Brandt, Sancho, and Haaland would relish.
The opposite is also true. If Wolfsburg strike first, Dortmund will push even higher up the pitch and could potentially be exploited on the break. That is why the first goal on Saturday could be crucial.
Take the draw option here – Dortmund deserves to be the favorite but look a little overpriced, while Wolfsburg has enough quality to pick up a point at home.