Hertha to achieve another capital result
Werder Bremen v Hertha Berlin
Tuesday 25 September, 17:30
Live on BT Sport 2
Times they are a changin' in Berlin. Capital club Hertha, who have punched above their weight for a long time under coach Pal Dardai, are moving away from the Hungarian coach's usual ultra-pragmatic style. Slovakian playmaker Ondrej Duda is finally fully fit and firing, Austrian speedster Valentino Lazaro has continued last season's upward curve, and new signing Javairo Dilrosun (a young Dutch winger signed from Manchester City) has been a revelation. Add in the street smarts and talent of veteran striker Salamon Kalou and Vedad Ibisevic, and you have a pretty impressive combination of youth and experience.
Hertha have harvested ten points from their first four matches, and it would have been 12 had they not conceded a last-gasp equaliser in a breathless 2-2 draw at Wolfsburg. As they make the trip north to face Werder Bremen, they have every reason to think they can get another positive result.
Werder are unbeaten after four matchdays for the first time in 13 years, but they have been a little fortunate to get the points tally they have. They needed late goals to draw with Hannover and beat Eintracht Frankfurt, and they won a pulsating game at Augsburg 3-2 on Saturday because of a late goalkeeping howler by Fabian Giefer.
There have been plenty of positives for Werder: 21-year-old midfielder Maximilian Eggestein has blossomed under coach Florian Kohfeldt, keeper Jiri Pavlenka and a consistently-selected back four have given the team a good base to work from, and Davy Klaassen's form has mitigated the loss of Thomas Delaney to Borussia Dortmund.
However, Werder are yet to put together a good 90 minutes, and have been guilty of losing intensity in big periods of games. Hertha won't let them get away with that, and although Werder are still unbeaten at home under Kohfeldt, they shouldn't be trading at just above evens to win this game.

Bayern to cruise to Bavarian derby win

Bayern Munich v Augsburg
Tuesday 25 September, 19:30
Live on Betfair Live Video
As I predicted in the weekend's column, Bayern ran out comfortable winners at Schalke on Saturday, with goals from James Rodriguez and Robert Lewandowski giving them a 2-0 victory. It could've been a more impressive win - James missed a sitter, and David Alaba smashed a free-kick onto the bar.
Bayern are playing some wonderful football under new coach Niko Kovac, and the smiles are back. Kovac pushed them hard physically in pre-season, and they look sharp and motivated.
Augsburg have suffered back-to-back defeats, and both were really painful. They led 1-0 at Mainz late on before two goalkeeping errors from Fabian Giefer gifted the hosts a 2-1 win, and then on Saturday they fought back from 2-0 down against Werder Bremen, only to lose 3-2 after Giefer fumbled a routine pick-up and presented the ball straight to Davy Klaassen. His coach Manuel Baum - a former goalkeeper himself - was on the verge of tears when talking about Giefer's errors.
There'll be more tears on Tuesday, because Bayern should batter their Bavarian neighbours here. Augsburg haven't kept a clean sheet yet this season, and I don't expect them to get close to a shut-out against a rampant Bayern.

Battle of the underachievers could be dull affair

RB Leipzig v Stuttgart
Wednesday 26 September, 19:30
Live on Betfair Live Video
These are chaotic times for RB Leipzig. Coach Ralf Rangnick launched an extraordinary (if justified) tirade at his players after last Thursday's calamitous and humiliating home defeat to sister club Salzburg in the Europa League, accusing some of them of totally ignoring the match plan and treating the game like a chore. Young French players Nordi Mukiele and Jean-Kevin Augustin were fined and dropped from the squad for Sunday's 1-1 draw at Eintracht Frankfurt, after turning up late to Thursday's pre-match warm-up and using their mobile phones in the dressing room.
Leipzig have won just one of their first four games of the Bundesliga season, and there are a number of problems. The players don't seem to have bought into Rangnick's plan to move back towards intense pressing, and are grimly hanging onto some of the ideals of ex-coach Ralph Hasenhuttl, who was ditched at the end of last season. Defensively, RBL have been all over the place, and they haven't managed a clean sheet in the league. Rangnick's frustration is causing its own problems, and he seems to have transmitted anxiety to his players, with everything seeming a bit haphazard and rushed on the pitch.
Stuttgart are even worse off. They have claimed just two points from four games, and had to hang on for dear life at home to newly-promoted Fortuna Dusseldorf on Friday in a 0-0 draw. Coach Tayfun Korkut seems unable to kickstart his team's attack, and they have failed to score in four of their five competitive matches this season. The service to star striker Mario Gomez has been poor, and young Argentinian forward Nicolas Gonzalez is so desperate to get involved that there is no focus to his movement.
Under 2.5 Goals is trading at 2.34, and I think that's worth backing. Leipzig are working towards trying to make the team more balanced and defensively secure, and I'm pretty sure Korkut will try to dig in and take few risks.
RECOMMENDED BETS
Back Draw and Away in the Double Chance market in Werder Bremen v Hertha Berlin at 1.94
Back Bayern Munich -2.5 on the Asian Handicap v Augsburg at 1.87
Back Under 2.5 Goals in RB Leipzig v Stuttgart at 2.34

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