Serge Gnabry was the inspiration for Bayern's 3-0 win at Chelsea in the Champions League, and Kevin Hatchard thinks the league leaders will win again this weekend.
Don't be distracted by Lewy absence
Hoffenheim v Bayern Munich Saturday 29 February, 14:30 Live on Betfair Live Video
Bayern Munich produced one of their best displays of the season in midweek, as they comprehensively outplayed Chelsea in a 3-0 Champions League victory. Serge Gnabry continued his outstanding form with an excellent brace, and Robert Lewandowski finally ended his UCL knockout drought with the third. At the post-match celebration, Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge dropped a massive hint that caretaker coach Hansi Flick would be given the role on a permanent basis. Given that Rummenigge has long admired the work of Thomas Tuchel, it shows just how well Flick has done that he now appears to be the front runner.
Since Flick replaced Niko Kovac, Bayern have won 15 of their 18 matches in all competitions. Their work without the ball has improved hugely, they are less predictable in attack, and the swagger and ruthlessness is back in their play. They have won their last four away matches, and they have scored at least three goals in all of them.
A rare injury to star striker Lewandowski (he has fractured his tibia) will keep the Polish international out for four weeks, which will be his longest absence as a Bayern player. However, the in-form Gnabry (five goals in his last three games) can fill in through the centre, and Bayern have plenty of options on the flanks. Thomas Muller is on outstanding form (he has 14 Bundesliga assists already) and left-back Alphonso Davies announced his qualities to the world at Stamford Bridge.
Hoffenheim beat Bayern in Munich in the league for the first time in their history, and pushed them hard in a 4-3 DFB Cup defeat at the Allianz Arena. However, injuries are starting to bite, especially in attack. Forwards Munas Dabbur and Sargis Adamyan are both out, while star forward Andrej Kramaric is struggling with a groin problem. Alfred Schreuder's side has only taken a point from the last three matches, and they have lost four of their last seven matches at home.
Given the hosts' injury issues, and the searing form Bayern are in, I'll back the visitors to win by at least a couple of goals here. Also, given that Gnabry is on cloud nine, I'll back him to score against his former club at odds-against.
Dortmund to continue title charge
Borussia Dortmund v Freiburg Saturday 29 February, 14:30 Live on Betfair Live Video
Borussia Dortmund are keeping up the pressure on Bayern Munich and RB Leipzig in the title race, and their 2-1 win over PSG has given them a great chance of reaching the quarter-finals of the Champions League. Norwegian sensation Erling Haaland has rattled in a barely believable 12 goals in eight competitive matches, and Jadon Sancho is scoring or making goals in almost every single game.
At home, BVB have been formidable all season. They remain the only Bundesliga side with an unbeaten home record this term, and they have won 13 of their 17 competitive matches at Signal Iduna Park. Seven of those wins were by three goals or more.
Freiburg made an extraordinary start to the season, but they are seriously running out of steam. They have won just two of their last nine matches in the top flight, and they have lost three of their last six on the road. Christian Streich's side have scored just twice in their last five matches, and hopes of a shock European qualification are fading fast.
I'll back Dortmund -2.0 on the Asian Handicap here at 1.82.
Bold Paderborn can finally make their mark
Mainz v Paderborn Saturday 29 February, 14:30 Live on Betfair Live Video
Paderborn couldn't hang onto what would have been a precious draw at Bayern Munich last Friday, as fatigue told and Robert Lewandowski smashed home a late winner for the champions. However, the performance was typical of the approach of the league's bottom side. They have played with bravery and have stuck to their attacking principles, and they have kept faith with popular coach Steffen Baumgart.
On the road, with their dangerous pace on the counter-attack, Paderborn have produced some excellent performances. They have only lost two of their last six away games in the league, and they scored at least twice in three of those games. Dennis Srbeny's return to the club from Norwich City has been a big success - he embarrassed Manuel Neuer in scoring at Bayern, and he has netted three times in six appearances.
Mainz were smacked 4-0 at Wolfsburg on Sunday, and their home form is atrocious. They have taken just a point from their last five games at the Opel Arena, and overall they have leaked a staggering 52 goals in 23 games. They have only scored twice in the last five home games, and I think Paderborn can cause them all kinds of problems on the counter.
Mainz seem way too short at 1.86 here, so I'll lay them.