Dortmund to keep on marching

Fortuna Dusseldorf v Borussia Dortmund
Tuesday 18 December, 19:30
Borussia Dortmund took another important step towards the Bundesliga title on Saturday, as they edged out Werder Bremen 2-1. BVB are still unbeaten in the league, and have only dropped six points all season. They are playing with the control and composure of potential champions, but perhaps more importantly they seem to be enjoying the challenge of dethroning Bayern Munich, rather than feeling crushed by the weight of expectation.
Paco Alcacer and Marco Reus added to their respective goal tallies on Saturday, and as a unit BVB have rattled in 41 goals in 15 league matches. They have scored at least twice in six of their last seven matches in all competitions. When an exciting prospect like Christian Pulisic is struggling to get game time, you know something must be working.
Fortuna Dusseldorf boosted their survival hopes with a 2-0 home win against Freiburg on Saturday, as centre-back Kaan Ayhan bizarrely scored a brace. Despite this fine win, and their amazing comeback in a recent 3-3 draw at Bayern, I can't see F95 getting anything here. There isn't enough quality in the Fortuna attack to consistently trouble the Dortmund defence, and I think the Dusseldorf rearguard will really struggle to match the speed of BVB's attack.
I'm happy to back the league leaders to win this comfortably. They have won ten of their last 11 Bundesliga matches, and they shouldn't have any problems here.

Foals to maintain 100% home record

Borussia Monchengladbach v Nurnberg
Tuesday 18 December, 17:30
Life back in the Bundesliga has been something of a struggle for Nurnberg. They have one of the smallest budgets in the top flight, and their lack of quality at this level has been plain to see. Friday's home defeat to Wolfsburg showcased their deficiencies - they lacked focus and inspiration in attack, and they were caught out of position too often in defence. Coach Michael Kollner seemed to just hurl his substitutes into the fray, with no clear plan as to what they were supposed to be doing.
Nurnberg's record away to the big hitters doesn't bode well ahead of this trip to the Rhineland. They were shredded 7-0 by Borussia Dortmund, smacked 6-0 at RB Leipzig, and their 3-0 derby defeat at Bayern Munich was as limp a performance as you could see.
Borussia Monchengladbach have won all of their home games in the league, and they have won the last five by at least two goals. They are averaging two points per game this season, and a return to the Champions League is a distinct possibility.
Gladbach's firepower should be way too much for Nurnberg here, and this could be another lopsided result.

Hoffenheim too short to take the win

Werder Bremen v Hoffenheim
Wednesday 19 December, 19:30
Both Werder and Hoffenheim are in danger of letting their European dream slip away at present, despite the fact both clubs are actually playing some decent football. Werder certainly weren't embarrassed in defeat at Borussia Dortmund on Saturday, while Hoffenheim made more than enough chances to beat Borussia Monchengladbach in what turned out to be a goalless draw.
Hoffenheim have now drawn four matches in a row in the Bundesliga, and if you include the Champions League they have gone six games without a win. Their road record in the German top flight isn't particularly inspiring - they have only won three of their last eight away games in the Bundesliga, and two of those wins were at struggling Hannover and Nurnberg. It's also worth considering that Hoffenheim have leaked 17 goals in their last ten games in all competitions.
On that basis, I can't see why Hoffenheim are trading at 2.06 to win this. Werder are a technically gifted side who have suffered from a tough fixture list of late. The northern giants have had to face Dortmund, Bayern and Gladbach in the last five games, so it's no surprise their form has dipped a bit.
Midweek games under the lights at the Weserstadion are always a bit special, and I see this as a potentially even contest. On that basis, I'm happy to get the home win and the draw into our portfolio.
RECOMMENDED BETS
Back Borussia Dortmund -1.5 on the Asian Handicap v Fortuna Dusseldorf at 2.28
Back Borussia Monchengladbach -1.5 on the Asian Handicap v Nurnberg at [2.19]
Lay Hoffenheim v Werder at 2.06

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