Bundesliga Betting Odds, Picks, Preview, Predictions: Our Top Bets From Matches Featuring RB Leipzig & Bayer Leverkusen

Bundesliga Betting Odds, Picks, Preview, Predictions: Our Top Bets From Matches Featuring RB Leipzig & Bayer Leverkusen article feature image

Hasan Bratic/picture alliance via Getty Images. Pictured: RB Leipzig standout Tyler Adams.

  • Life in German soccer continues this weekend, with plenty of Bundesliga matches on the schedule.
  • Anthony Dabbundo drops his best bets on the card, including a picks from Saturday's matches featuring RB Leipzig and Bayer Leverkusen.
  • Check out his picks below and predictions from the German top flight.

The Bundesliga winter break is over as the season has reached the halfway point. And it should come as no surprise Bayern Munich has a healthy lead in the standings atop the German top flight.

The Omicron variant in the latest COVID-19 wave has made its way into mainland Europe and started to produce cases within some of the squads, but all nine league matches are on as scheduled as of this writing.

The league begins the second half of its double round robin as it started with the first, with Borussia Mönchengladbach facing Bayern Munich following two thrilling matches earlier this season.

The rest of the slate includes Borussia Dortmund traveling to take on a surging Eintracht Frankfurt, underachiever RB Leipzig hosting European contender Mainz and Greuther Fürth taking on Stuttgart in a relegation battle.

Here are the three games I'm eyeing on the weekend card:

Bundesliga Best Bets

Bayern Munich vs. Gladbach

Bayern Munich Odds-275
Gladbach Odds+650
Over/Under3.5 (-125 / +105)
Day | TimeFriday | 2:30 p.m. ET
How To WatchESPN+
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

Gladbach has had more success against Bayern Munich than any club in Germany over the last few seasons and the visiting side is undervalued in this match as well. The two met last January in a match the Foals came from 2-0 down to upset the German champions in a 3-2 thriller.

Bayern Munich and Gladbach played on opening day to begin the new season and the Foals earned a 1-1 draw while creating more than two expected goals and nearly winning the game in the closing minutes. The clubs faced off in the DFB-Pokal earlier this year, with Bayern suffering its worst competitive defeat in multiple decades as manager Adi Hütter's side triumphed in a 5-0 blowout.

Bayern has had its wins as well, beating securing a 2-1 win in the post-COVID restart in 2020 and a 6-0 rout in this fixture last season. However, the Foals have given the Bavarians trouble and even despite their horrendous form of late, you won't find a better buy-low spot than this one on the underdogs.

Gladbach opened at +2 in this match, but the market has moved sharply toward them following COVID-19 issues within the Bayern camp. Leroy Sané, Dayot Upamecano, Manuel Neuer, Kingsley Coman, Corentin Tolisso, Lukas Hernandez and Alphonso Davies are notables on the list and likely to miss out.

That forces Bayern into a mostly reserve midfield and makeshift backline that could be exploited by Gladbach's attack that's badly underperforming based on xG vs. actual goals. The Foals have scored just 22 goals from 30 xG and have a ton of positive regression coming for them at that end of the pitch.

My projections make Bayern a 1.6-goal favorite with a fully fit squad, but upon making adjustments for the key players that will be out for the hosts, Gladbach is quite undervalued and should improve defensively following the winter break and time to sort out its issues.

Pick: Gladbach +1.5 (-115)

Leverkusen vs. Union Berlin

Leverkusen Odds-120
Union Berlin Odds+310
Over/Under2.5 (-125 / +105)
Day | TimeSaturday | 9:30 a.m. ET
How To WatchESPN+
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

Bayer Leverkusen striker Patrik Schick is among the best in the entire Bundesliga, but he's also carrying an otherwise very mediocre attack into the new year.

Schick has 16 goals on the season — only Robert Lewandowski has more — but the Czech standout is wildly over-performing his xG numbers and unlikely to continue doing that. He has just 10 xG on the season and once he cools off, Leverkusen likely will as well.

Moussa Diaby and Florian Wirtz are also talented attacking midfielders, but also over-performing on xG considerably for the club. Overall, Leverkusen is overrated because its attack has produced 40 goals from 29 xG and the offensive regression is coming.

Now, the side faces a Union Berlin defense that's fifth in non-penalty xGA, doesn't concede big scoring chances and is solid on set pieces. The numbers don't jump off the page for Union, but they should be able to keep Leverkusen out of transition opportunities where they're one of the better teams in the world and deadly in space.

Union is unlike most Bundesliga teams in how it doesn't play the chaotic high tempo style of play to the extent that the rest of the league does. They rank dead last in pressing intensity based on passes per defensive action, and that kind of matchup can grind this game to a halt and make it difficult for an otherwise mediocre Leverkusen attack to break them down.

Add in Leverkusen's defensive weakness on set pieces and Union's strength there, and the latter should be able to get at least a point.

Pick:Union Berlin +0.5 (-110 or better)

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RB Leipzig vs. Mainz

RB Leipzig Odds-130
Mainz Odds+350
Over/Under2.5 (-130 / +110)
Day | TimeSaturday | 9:30 a.m. ET
How To WatchESPN+
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

RB Leipzig's underperformance in close games despite relatively good underlying metrics like goal difference and xGDiff cost American manager Jesse Marsch his job. Leipzig's current personnel didn't really fit the chaotic pressing style Marsch tried to implement and conceded far too many goals from transition opportunities in the league to consistently win tight games.

Firing Marsch hasn't been a quick fix though, as the defense continues to have issues. A 1-1 draw with Augsburg and 2-0 loss to Arminia Bielefeld have them in 10th place at the halfway point. Next up is Mainz, which is an excellent defensive outfit that should be able to have similar success on the counterattack against Leipzig that past teams have had.

Mainz ranks fifth in big scoring chances created in the Bundesliga against a Leipzig defense that's among the worst at preventing them. Similar to how Union Berlin sat deep, let Leipzig have the ball and then ripped them apart on the counter, Mainz could do the same.

The Red Bulls' attack is still really good and the regression indicators on this match suggest there will be goals. Leipzig is producing 2.11 xG per 90 minutes despite scoring just 1.73 actual goals. And while its attack has been unlucky, its defense has been pretty fortunate to not given up more. Despite 1.53 xGA conceded/90 minutes, Die Roten Bullen have yielded only 1.13/90 minutes at even strength.

This game should be relatively open, with Leipzig's elite possession-based attack creating plenty of chances, but Mainz consistently looking dangerous in transition. That sets up for plenty of goals in this affair.

Pick:Single Game Parlay — Both Teams to Score and Total Over 2.5 Goals (+100)

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