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The battle for a place in Europe in the Bundesliga

It’s more of a formality than a fight at the top of the Bundesliga table, with Bayern Munich running away with a (hugely likely) eighth successive title. Similarly, at the bottom of the table, it appears that time has run out for both Werder Bremen, who’ve had a dramatic fall from grace, and new boys Paderborn, who are 11 points from safety with just four games to play.

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If you’re looking on betting on the top level of German football Bundesliga, then look no further than the exciting battle for a place in both the top four and top six and subsequently, the matters of European football next term.

The race for fourth place – and Champions League football – continues to hot up, with both Borussia Mönchengladbach and Bayer Leverkusen on 56 points – but Gladbach are edging it on goal difference after both teams lost their respective matches over the weekend. With 11 points then separating Wolfsburg in sixth, it’s a two-horse race as far as Champions League football is concerned. But who is in the ascendancy?

Since the season resumed following its suspension, Gladbach hosted Leverkusen – culminating in a 3-1 win for the visitors. However, neither side have been in very good form since, and in fact, it’s Leverkusen who have been unable to push on after securing the points over their rivals, with just one win in three.

If you take a look at both club’s run-ins, it’s Gladbach who have the tougher challenge and it’s the champions-elect Bayern next for them. Wolfsburg will be a difficult test with the Saxony club looking to once again secure Europa League football next season, and while Paderborn’s tenure in the top flight is all but over, they finish up against Hertha, who could still mathematically earn a place in Europe.

Leverkusen on the other hand face teams with nothing to place for. They travel to Schalke at the weekend, who are in free-fall and without a win in 12 matches – a hopeless run that extends prior to the season being suspended and has seen them slide from fifth to tenth in the Bundesliga table.

Leverkusen also face Hertha, but it’s Koln before then, and a season finale at home to Mainz, who are currently 15th and three points ahead of Fortuna Düsseldorf in the relegation play-off – and will no doubt be clutching at straws but hoping their fate doesn’t go down to the wire.

Further down the table, German Bundesliga tips place Wolfsburg as the favourites to finish in the top six, come the end of the season. With three wins from their last five matches, Oliver Glasner’s side hold a two-point advantage over Hoffenheim, however, the latest odds suggest that any one of five could still finish in the top six. It’s a battle which could be decided on the final day of the season – with Wolfsburg’s run-in extremely difficult. They face Freiburg, Gladbach, Schalke and Bayern in their remaining matches.

As mentioned, Schalke boast some of the worst form in the division and can surely be discounted from the race.
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As well as hosting Wolfsburg, they travel to Freiburg, who are currently eighth and four points off sixth place.
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Hoffenheim too, face two of the top three in RB Leipzig and Borussia Dortmund – but given the current situation of games played behind closed doors and no such thing as home advantage anymore, you simply cannot predict where points will be won and lost. While the Meisterschale looks like it’s firmly staying in Bavaria, elsewhere there’s a fight to the finish and there’s no doubt that this Bundesliga season isn’t over yet.


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