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Leverkusen v Mainz (Sun 2.30pm)
Leverkusen’s 4-1 away win at Hoffenheim last Saturday proved yet again just how much fire-power Bayer coach Heiko Herrlich has at his disposal. His team have developed a ruthlessly efficient streak in front of goal, dispatching chances calmly and coolly.
Mainz, will be aware of the pace of Bundesliga sensation Leon Bailey, the intricate movement of Julian Brandt and the stealthy runs of Lucas Alario, to say nothing of main striker Kevin Volland, who’s in a rich vein of form. The visitors will surely employ a more pragmatic and conservative defensive set-up than Hoffenheim’s slightly gung-ho approach to stifle the home side.
Leverkusen’s excellent run of six wins in the last ten games in competitions, with one sole defeat against Bayern, is nevertheless destined to continue. Mainz haven’t won a single game in the league away from home all season are hugely reliant on their home from to keep their heads just above water in 15th spot.
Last week’s 3-2 win v Stuttgart was a testament to the character of Sandro Schwarz’s men but can they find similar courage outside the Opel-Arena, against the team of the moment? Anything but win for Bayer would come as a huge surprise on Sunday afternoon.
- Leverkusen 4, Mainz 1 (15-1, Unibet)
- Alario to score first (41-10, Unibet)
- Over 3.5 goals (123-100, Unibet)
Munich-born Raphael Honigstein writes about football for Germany’s biggest broadsheet, Süddeutsche Zeitung, the Guardian, ESPNFC and his tips appear here thanks to our football partner at MrFixitsTips, Unibet. They're making a big splash in the UK betting scene and if you join them today you can claim up to £30 in Welcome Bonuses when you deposit and place your first bet.