After five games of the Bundesliga season, the top of the table is finally beginning to look like pundits and fans had predicted before the season with last season’s top three taking their places as this season’s top three.
The order may not be exactly as expected, but there’s still 29 games left of the campaign and a lot of football to be played. RB Leipzig lead the pack thanks to their fantastic start under Julian Nagelsmann, while Bayern Munich have yet to be beaten in 2019-20.
Borussia Dortmund had a shock defeat a few weeks ago against Union Berlin, but are just one point behind Bayern Munich and three adrift of early leaders Leipzig.
Bundesliga Match of the Weekend – RB Leipzig vs Schalke
Two early top four contenders take on each other as leaders RB Leipzig host David Wagner’s much-improved Schalke on Saturday afternoon. The former Huddersfield Town boss has guided the Royal Blues to three wins from his first five league games in charge and is beginning to shape the side into his image.
They lack a proper out-and-out striker, but Amine Harit continued to star out wide for them last weekend and scored the late winner against Mainz. The buzz around the 22-year-old Moroccan international has seen his prize rise 33% in the last week and it could continue to go up as Wagner leans on him to provide magic in attack for Schalke.
Rest of the Weekend
Andre Silva bagged his first Bundesliga goal last weekend as Eintracht Frankfurt recorded a deserved 2-2 draw with Borussia Dortmund. Frankfurt’s squad is much-changed from last season but they are now beginning to gel under Adi Hutter with Silva, Bas Dost, and Goncalo Paciencia providing selection headaches in attack.
With Frankfurt playing Vitoria next Thursday in the Europa League, Hutter has to decide who to start against Union Berlin on Friday and may stick with Silva and Paciencia after last week’s Dortmund result.
Borussia Mönchengladbach have taken 22 points from away games in 2019, the second best total in the Bundesliga, and could add to that tally on Saturday at misfiring Hoffenheim. Marcus Thuram (son of Lilian) scored twice off the bench last weekend and is in contention to make the starting XI beside Alassane Plea in attack.
Niklas Füllkrug was the latest name added to Werder Bremen’s extensive injury list last week, with an ACL tear ruling him out for the rest of the season. The much-depleted side head to Borussia Dortmund this weekend, struggling to field enough fit players in their proper positions. That gives Dortmund a huge advantage to pick up another three points, with Paco Alcacer looking to bounce back from his disappointing outing in front of goal against Eintracht Frankfurt.
Bundesliga Player to Watch – Robert Lewandowski vs Bayern Munich £1.83
Bayern Munich’s competitive record against Paderborn is four games, four wins, 21 goals for, and one against. The signs point to another big win for the Bavarians, with Paderborn’s early home form also looking ominous (3-1 loss to Freiburg followed by a 5-1 loss to Schalke).
Robert Lewandowski has nine goals from five league games so far this season, sitting at 211 Bundesliga goals. Two more will take him level with Manfred Burgsmüller and up to joint-fourth on the all-time Bundesliga top scorer list. Jupp Heynckes sits in third on 220 goals and a game against Paderborn is the sort of clash where Lewandowski can pull himself closer to those all-time greats.