Favre content despite falling short

Borussia Dortmund head coach Lucien Favre believes his side have enjoyed a fine season, despite the disappointment of having just missed out on the Bundesliga title.

BVB ended their domestic campaign by winning 2-0 at Borussia Monchengladbach, with Jadon Sancho and Marco Reus their goalscorers.

However, Bayern Munich swept to a 5-1 home victory against Eintracht Frankfurt to secure a seventh straight league crown, finishing two points ahead of Die Schwarzgelben.

And, while admitting to a tinge of disappointment at missing out, Favre was also full of praise for the way his side performed over the campaign as a whole.

He told reporters: "In the end it is clear that we are a little disappointed by the result of the championship, but we won our game.

"There was a little missing to the title, but we are still very happy with our season. Nobody would have thought that we would get 76 points.

"It was tight this season. We haven't missed much, overall you can say that we conceded unnecessary goals.

"But we must not forget that we had good luck in the first half of the season. We turned around some games at the very end. That's why I always said that we still have much to do.

"Of course we always want to have another good season like this – 76 points is not easy to reach, that is clear."

Meanwhile, Bayern are 2/7 to defeat RB Leipzig in the final of the DFB-Pokal, with Die Roten Bullen priced at 5/2 to lift the trophy for the first time in their history.

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Bundesliga: Dortmund Victory but It’s Game Over

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Borussia Monchengladbach 0-2 Borussia Dortmund

Dortmund finished off the Bundesliga season with an impressive win away to Monchengladbach, but it wasn’t quite enough for Lucien Favre’s team to win the title.

As we entered the final day, it was always FC Bayern’s to lose as the Bavarians started with a two-point lead. And that’s how it ended as the champions beat Eintracht Frankfurt at the Allianz Arena to pip BVB to the post.

But this was a consummate performance from the runners up, as Jadon Sancho gave the visitors a lead on the stroke of half-time before Marco Reus added a second to make the points safe.

It’s been a cracking season for us Bundesliga fans. A game of cat and mouse as Favre’s team got off to a flyer and were chased by the slow-starting Bayern side for much of the campaign. After a wobble, BVB recovered to take the race to the final day, but in the end, the title returns to Munich.

Highlights of the game

Jadon Sancho's goal helps Borussia Dortmund get a win against Monchengladbach in Bundesliga

Jadon Sancho celebrates with teammates after scoring Borussia Dortmund’s first goal against Monchengladbach

The hosts are resigned to losing Belgium star Thorgan Hazard to Dortmund in the summer transfer window, but he made a start today and was determined to leave on a high. He had the first effort of the game, taking a pass from Oscar Wendt. But his shot from the left side of the penalty area was charged down.

BVB needed a win to keep their Bundesliga hopes alive. Marco Reus met a Mario Gotze cross but directed his header just wide. Die Fohlen hit back and when Josep Drmic found Jonas Hofmann just outside the area, his shot flew narrowly wide.

Dortmund had another chance from a Christian Pulisic corner when Lukasz Piszczek rose highest, but his header missed the target. And when Reus had a chance from a free-kick he shot just past the post.

Then in two dramatic minutes just before the break, VAR took centre stage as Dortmund pressed for a half-time lead.

First, Reus appeared to be chopped down in the box by Matthias Ginter, but after VAR was consulted the Monchengladbach defender had a reprieve. Moments later, BVB had the ball in the net. Reus crossed for Sancho, who slammed it into the top right corner.

The away fans celebrated but then went quiet as the referee consulted VAR again to see if the ball had gone out of play before Reus crossed. But after three agonising minutes, the goal stood and the Yellow Wall went up again.

The half-time Bundesliga 2019 updates revealed that FC Bayern held a one-goal lead at the Allianz Arena so BVB fans were left hoping for a second-half miracle in Bavaria.

But their team was determined to finish their own part of the deal. Reus had two early efforts before doubling the lead on 54 minutes. In his last game for BVB, Pulisic was in superb form and he crossed for his skipper to convert from close range.

Pulisic then had a shot of his own blocked. Sancho also came within a whisker of making it three, but his deflected shot bounced back off the post.

The miracle in Munich never came as Bayern destroyed Frankfurt, 5-1, but BVB had pushed them all the way.

Key statistics

The Borussia Monchengladbach vs Borussia Dortmund betting odds pointed to a tight affair and so it was in a first half in which the visitors dominated possession. But both sides managed just four shots each, and BVB had the one on target.

In the end, the visitors were good value for their win at pre-match betting odds of 2.20. They finished with 70 per cent possession, 12 shots to seven, with three on target while Die Fohlen didn’t manage a single one.

Dortmund have increased their dominance in the head-to-heads, now doubling Monchengladbach’s wins in this fixture since 1992, making it 28 to 14. And Favre’s team is now unbeaten in eight games against Die Fohlen.

Arsenal Asian Handicap +0.25 @ 1.85 1X2 Arsenal @ 3.10 Over 2.50 @ 2.02 Third Line text CLICK HEREDisclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.Europa League

What’s next?

Favre will be in the market to strengthen his team again. American star Christian Pulisic is heading to the Premier League to join Chelsea on a £58m deal, and the BVB boss will work hard through the summer to put his club in a position to challenge again next season.

Dieter Hecking’s Monchengladbach missed out on Champions League football after defeat today as Bayer Leverkusen took the fourth spot with an impressive 1-5 win away to Hertha Berlin. So it’s Europa League football for Die Fohlen.

 

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Bundesliga: The Stakes couldn’t be Higher!

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Borussia Monchengladbach vs Borussia Dortmund

The 2019 Bundesliga comes to a thrilling climax this weekend, and it won’t be any bigger than in the North Rhine where Borussia Monchengladbach welcomes Dortmund.

Not that the welcome will be particularly warm as both teams desperately need a victory. In a pulsating last round, BVB kept their Bundesliga hopes alive with a 3-2 win over Fortuna Dusseldorf, while FC Bayern drew in Leipzig to keep a thrilling title race going for another week; a real bonus for us Bundesliga fans, apart from those in Munich of course!

Bayern is at home to Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday, and that match will affect both teams at Borussia Park, as Frankfurt is still in the hunt for a top four place, in competition with Monchengladbach.

Lucien Favre will be pleased his team has taken this title race to the final weekend. Though BVB led for much of the season, in recent weeks they have had to fight hard to keep their dream alive. But as this is just as big a game for the hosts, the vast majority of the Borussia Park crowd will be screaming for a home win.

Dieter Hecking’s side picked up a much needed victory last week to keep their Champions League hopes alive, so they’ll be well up for this one. And while both sets of fans will have a close watch on the Bundesliga 2019 updates from elsewhere, they’ll be well advised not to take their eyes off the pitch for one minute.

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Talking Points

Two stars aiming for a spectacular finish

With the close season and the transfer merry-go-round just around the corner both Borussias are set to say goodbye to one of their favourite players.

Monchengladbach midfield wizard Thorgan Hazard has indicated his desire to move on to new pastures, with Dortmund being the prime candidates to secure his signature. Premier League runners up Liverpool are also reported to be interested in the young Belgian, seemingly wondering whether he can become as good as his brother Eden, who has had another outstanding season with Chelsea.

Hazard scored his tenth goal of the season in Die Fohlen’s 4-0 win over Nurnberg last weekend and, added to his 11 assists for the season that makes him Hecking’s most creative player. He’s been at the club for five years and has become a fan’s favourite, but he may feel the time is right for a move as his international career blossoms.

BVB are also saying goodbye to a young star of their own. American Christian Pulisic has stayed at the Signal Iduna Park on loan following his £58m January transfer to Chelsea. And he reminded the fans in the Yellow Wall just what they’ll be missing with a pivotal display in Dortmund’s victory over Dusseldorf, putting his side ahead in the first half.

Both players would love to go out with a big performance and that could mean fireworks.

Borussia Monchengladbach are chased by three other Bundesliga teams in the battle for the last Champions League slot

A Gladbach win over Dortmund would see them qualify for next season’s Champions League in fourth place

The race for fourth place

After a poor run of one point from nine Monchengladbach recorded that impressive 4-0 win over Nurnberg to haul themselves back into a three way race for a Champions League place. Hecking’s side occupies fourth spot, on 55 points, with Bayer Leverkusen behind on goal difference and Eintracht a single point further back.

Eintracht has that huge fixture against FC Bayern to contend with; while Bayer Leverkusen has a difficult away game against tenth placed Hertha Berlin.

Die Fohlen know that a victory over BVB will book their place in the 2019/20 Champions League. They will go all out for the win.

History

The hosts won’t look to the past for inspiration on Saturday as Dortmund have had the better of the head to heads, winning 27 of the 51 meetings since 1992, while Monchengladbach have won 14 and there have been ten draws.

Die Fohlen haven’t won any of their last seven games against Dortmund, and Marco Reus and Jadon Sancho were both on target as BVB won the return fixture in December, with Christoph Kramer scoring Monchengladbach’s reply.

Betting Tip

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Borussia Monchengladbach vs Borussia Dortmund First Half over 1.50 @ 1.94
May 18, 21:30(GMT+8)

The Monchengladbach vs BVB betting odds tell us just how well balanced this game is. There is no clear favourite. Monchengladbach is at 2.83 with the visitors at 2.20 and the draw is available at 3.80.

The visitors have some outstanding attacking talent, but with home advantage and a huge incentive I expect the hosts to throw everything at this game.  Dortmund have been struggling at the back recently, notably in the 2-4 derby defeat to Schalke.

I expect to see goals in this game and a fast start. And for an alternative bet, with no score-line lower than 9.00, a 2-2 draw is available at 10.00.

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Dortmund Keep Bundesliga Hopes Alive

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Borussia Dortmund 3-2 Fortuna Dusseldorf

Borussia Dortmund have taken the Bundesliga title race to the last week with a thrilling win over Fortuna Dusseldorf at the Signal Iduna Park.

Friedhelm Funkel’s visitors put up a good fight, but Lucien Favre steered his side to a deserved win. Christian Pulisic headed the hosts in front just before the break and then a dramatic second half saw Fortuna level, and then miss a penalty to let the hosts off the hook.

There was no escaping the fact that the other Bundesliga 2019 updates of the day, namely FC Bayern’s trip to third placed RB Leipzig, would have as big an impact on BVB as their own performance would. And when the news came in that the champions had drawn it made this result mean a whole lot more.

The Bundesliga 2019 betting odds have been firmly in favour of the Bavarians since their 0-5 destruction of BVB in April, but Favre’s team’s hopes are still alive.

Highlights of the game

Dortmund’s catastrophic derby defeat at home to Schalke delivered a near fatal blow to their title hopes, and the passionate fans in the Yellow Wall tried to lift their heroes up for one last push.

But it was Die Flingeraner which had the first attempt on goal, when Markus Suttner centred for Dodi Lukebakio to head towards the bottom right corner but Marwin Hitz was equal to it. That awoke the hosts and Paco Alcacer put Pulisic through on goal but his shot flew wide. Raphael Guerreiro then tested Michael Rensing with a low shot which the Fortuna keeper got down well to save.

The visitors weren’t in Dortmund just to watch though, and Matthias Zimmerman put in a dangerous cross but Dawid Kownacki headed high and wide.

Thomas Delaney and Guerreiro both had shots from distance for BVB but neither troubled Rensing in the Fortuna goal.

Jadon Sancho has been a revelation in this year’s Bundesliga, leading the assists chart with 14 before this match, but Favre started with the young English star on the bench. And the fans in the Yellow Wall were starting to question the wisdom of that as half time approached. But then, on 41 minutes, they erupted as Pulisic broke the deadlock. Delaney headed the ball into the danger area and the young American stole in to nod home into the bottom right corner from close range.

There was a buzz around the Signal Iduna Park when the news came that the first half in Leipzig was goalless, which meant the race for the Bundesliga was not yet over.

If the first half was a fairly cagey affair, the second began at a hectic pace and the visitors silenced the home crowd just two minutes after the break. The dangerous Suttner fired a cross in and skipper Oliver Fink planted his header beyond Hitz and into the net.

Dortmund fought back quickly though, and were ahead again, on 53 minutes, when Delaney had a shot blocked but found the net with his second attempt. And then just before the hour there was high drama. Lukebakio was brought down by Hitz and the referee pointed to the penalty spot, but the BVB keeper stayed down injured.

When he got to his feet two minutes later Lukebakio had been waiting too long, and when he took the spot kick he side footed it wide of the right post.

Adam Bodzek has been booked with a red card after nasty foul against Jadon Sancho in recent Bundesliga game

Fortuna Dusseldorf’s Adam Bodzek looks upset after receiving a red card during their Bundesliga game against Borussia Dortmund

That inspired the home side to get on the front foot and both Mario Gotze and Axel Witsel had shots charged down, while Favre brought Sancho on to loud cheers.  And Fortuna went down to ten men when Adam Bodzek received his marching orders on 82 minutes for a nasty foul on Sancho, to end Fortuna’s hopes.

Gotze made the points safe in the second minute of injury time but here was still time for Dawid Kownacki to pull one back with virtually the last kick.

Key statistics

BVB and Fortuna came into the match with identical recent records of three wins, two defeats and a draw in the last six games. Dusseldorf were trying to do a league double over their hosts but at pre-match us odds of 7.80 this was always a big ask.

Dortmund just about deserved their half time lead, having enjoyed 60 per cent possession and leading the shot count by six to two.

But the second half exploded into life; and after Fortuna missed a penalty chance and went down to ten men the points were destined to stay in Dortmund.

What’s next?

BVB will finish with a difficult trip away to Borussia Monchengladbach. A poor run of one win in six games meant the hosts let their grip on a Champions League place slip; but today they kept them alive with a thumping 0-4 win away to Nurnberg.

Tottenham Hotspur Asian Handicap +0.50 @ 1.93 1X2 Liverpool @ 2.00 Total Goals 4-6 @ 3.70 Third Line text CLICK HEREDisclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.UEFA – Champions League

FC Bayern are at home to another Champions League chasing side when Eintracht Frankfurt visit the Allianz Arena. Win that and the title stays in Bavaria.

Meanwhile, Die Flingeraner will end with a home match against relegated Hannover 96.

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Bundesliga: Dusseldorf Aim To Do The Double Over Dortmund

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Borussia Dortmund vs Fortuna Dusseldorf

Barring an epic collapse by Bayern Munich in the last two weeks of the season, Borussia Dortmund are not going to win the Bundesliga. They are now four points behind the leaders after dropping points in back-to-back weeks against Schalke and Werder Bremen.

With the title all but gone, Dortmund don’t have much else left to play for except pride. They will play their final home game of the season against midtable Fortuna Dusseldorf.

Dusseldorf managed to survive their first season in the top-flight since 2013. And while most Bundesliga 2019 predictions likely won’t fancy them to leave Signal Iduna Park with a win, they have already defied the odds against Dortmund once this season — and will look to do so again.

Talking Points

BvB blow their title chance

In a vacuum, Dortmund have had quite an impressive season. Few expected them to challenge for the Bundesliga title given their relative youth and inexperience. But they defied those expectations and pushed hard Bayern all the way.

However, it’s become clear that Dortmund just lack that mental strength to dethrone Bayern. It was evident in their humiliating defeat in Der Klassiker. And it manifested itself once again over the last couple of weeks, first in their Revierderby meltdown against Schalke and then in their 2-2 draw against Werder Bremen last weekend.

Things were looking good for Dortmund in the derby as they took an early lead. But they quickly went behind at the half-hour mark, and then all hell broke loose with the Marco Reus and Marius Wolf red cards in the second half.

Despite missing the suspended Reus, though, Dortmund again surged to a 2-0 first-half lead at Bremen. However, they were again unable to hold that lead as both keeper Roman Burki and defender Manuel Akanji committed costly errors which led to Bremen’s two goals.

Burki let a tame Kevin Mohwald shot slip right between his legs, while Akanji failed to shepherd the ball into touch, which gave Claudio Pizarro the chance to smash home the equaliser.

With the title virtually gone, it remains to be seen whether Dortmund can still pick themselves up for this match against Dusseldorf.

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Dusseldorf don’t do dull

Fortuna Dusseldorf’s first season back in 1. Bundesliga has been a success. Friedhelm Funkel’s side find themselves in 10th place with 41 points, which is a respectable feat for a promoted side.

Dusseldorf are coming off a 1-1 draw away at struggling Freiburg last weekend. That result was surprising because of the lack of goals that were scored.

Dusseldorf have been notable this season in their involvement in a number of high-scoring affairs. Prior to the Freiburg draw, 10 of their previous 11 games saw three or more goals, and six saw four or more.

While Dusseldorf’s away form has been patchy, they have at least been consistent in finding the back of the net. They have scored in each of the last five away matches, putting up an impressive 10 goals during that span.

Dusseldorf have also produced two of the most surprising Bundesliga 2019 results of the season. They drew 3-3 with Bayern in a wild game at Allianz Arena back in November, and they beat Dortmund 2-1 at home in December.

With their Bundesliga survival secured, Dusseldorf should be able to play with no pressure at Signal Iduna Park. They’ve already shown they’re capable of beating Dortmund, and given the BvB’s recent stumbles, they could do so again.

Bundesliga: Second-placed Borussia Dortmund vs tenth-place Fortuna Dusseldorf

Fortuna Dusseldorf boss Friedhelm Funkel watching his team from the touchline

History

Borussia Dortmund and Fortuna Dusseldorf have faced off 44 times over the years. Dortmund hold the slight edge with 20 wins, while Dusseldorf have 15.

But aside from preseason friendlies, the two sides have not faced each other much over the past few years since Dusseldorf have not been in the Bundesliga. But when the two did meet earlier this season, Dusseldorf picked up a shock 2-1 win at home.

Betting Tip

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Borussia Dortmund vs Fortuna Dusseldorf Total Goal 4-6 @ 1.99
May 11, 21:30 (GMT+8)

It’s hard not to see a good number of goals being scored in this match, one way or another. Dusseldorf aren’t the only side that’s been involved in some high-scoring affairs. Of Dortmund’s last 14 Bundesliga games, nine have had four or more goals, including four of the last five.

There have been Dortmund’s defence for most of the season, and their performances of late have only helped justify those concerns. If Dusseldorf get at that Dortmund backline, they should be able to create some good chances.

At the same time, though, Dortmund are also more than capable of slicing up Dusseldorf’s defence even with Reus missing. That’s why us tips the total goals to reach 4-6, which is priced at 1.99.

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Bundesliga: BVB must Fight to the End

Werder Bremen vs Borussia Dortmund

It may look like the Bundesliga title could be slipping away from Borussia Dortmund, but until the fight is well and truly over there is no stopping now.

After a superb season, Lucien Favre’s side has suffered two body blows which have left it trailing FC Bayern by two points as we enter Matchday 32.  Bundesliga Werder Bremen vs Borussia Dortmund is the clash of the weekend and a must win tie for Die Schwarzgelben.

Only a surprise draw for the champions against relegation threatened Nurnberg has kept Favre’s men in the hunt after they followed up a 5-0 thumping at the hands of Bayern early in April with a shock 2-4 reversal to FC Schalke last week.

The hosts will be hoping to end a sequence of three defeats, in front of a passionate crowd at the Weser-Stadion and BVB will need to be at their best. The Werder Bremen vs Borussia Dortmund betting odds point to a close game and it’s a tough test the visitors simply must overcome to keep their fading title hopes alive.

Talking Points

Werder in Kruse control

The hosts don’t have a lot to worry about as the Bundesliga comes to a climax, comfortably sitting in ninth and unlikely to make a Europa place after their recent blip. In all fairness two of the three defeats came at the hands of FC Bayern, one in the league and one in the DFB Semi Final; but more worrying for coach Florian Kohfeldt was a 4-1 thumping at the hands of mid table Fortuna Dusseldorf last week.

Werder Bremen set their eyes for the win for a Europa League spot against Bundesliga title chasing BVB

Max Kruse struggling to keep the ball against Bayern Munich

Striker Max Kruse has been the main man this season and he scored Werder’s only goal in that game with a first half penalty. That made it 11 goals for the season to add to his nine assists and the front man has caught the attention of some of Europe’s top clubs. He’s already the subject of transfer speculation, with Champions League semi-finalists Tottenham Hotspur reported to be considering a move to take him to the Premier League.

Just behind Kruse, former Everton attacking midfielder Davy Klassen has proven pedigree and, alongside Milot Rashica, the Dutch international provides creative support for Kruse.

While they have a potent striking edge, Die Werderaner were in some disarray at the back in the defeat in Dusseldorf, and a repeat performance of that will surely result in an away win.

Derby damage for BVB

Following two good wins Borussia prepared to take on local rivals FC Schalke 04 full of confidence, but the Revierderby turned out to be a complete disaster. It all started so well when Mario Gotze rose to head home a cross from Jadon Sancho but Schalke struck twice against the run of play before the break. Then, in the second half, it all went pear shaped for Favre and his team. First Marco Reus received a red card for an uncharacteristic bad foul on Suat Serdar, then after Schalke made it 3-1 from the free-kick, it wasn’t long before Marius Wolf followed Reus down the tunnel after another nasty challenge on Serdar.

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I’m not sure what the defensive midfielder had done to annoy his hosts, but Serdar had given his side a massive numerical advantage as they saw out a 2-4 win.

A bright note for BVB has been that Jadon Sancho’s stock has been rising by the week. The young England winger is way out ahead in the Bundesliga assists table with 14 to his name and he’s undoubtedly one of Europe’s hottest talents. And with 17-goal Paco Alcacer available as well as Christian Pulisic and Axel Witsel, the visitors’ team is still dripping with talent.

History

The head to head Werder Bremen vs Borussia Dortmund results tell the story of a well contested rivalry over the last three decades. Of the 58 games completed since 1992, BVB has won 28 to Werder Bremen’s 20 and their have been ten draws.

Dortmund won the earlier Bundesliga game, 2-1, back in December, but Werder Bremen put Die Schwarzgelben out of the DFB Pokal Cup in the Round of 16.

This season represented the best chance in years for BVB to add to their eight Bundesliga titles, but they are now in the last chance saloon.

Betting Tip

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Werder Bremen vs Borussia Dortmund Borussia Dortmund 1X2 @ 2.19
May 05, 00:30 (GMT+8)

The latest us odds have Borussia out at 6.80 to win the title now, but they must keep the faith having led the race for so long. The big question is whether they have regained their composure after losing it so badly in the Revierderby?

With the hosts at 2.94 to win and with less to motivate them I expect BVB to get their challenge back on the rails and, for an alternative bet, 1-2 is available at 8.25.

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Hazard hoping for Dortmund deal

Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Thorgan Hazard hopes to be able to seal a move to Borussia Dortmund at the end of the current campaign.

The 26-year-old Belgium international joined Die Fohlen from Chelsea in the summer of 2014, initially on loan, and soon impressed enough to secure a permanent move, penning a five-year contract which runs until the summer of 2020.

However, he would now like to take up an opportunity to join BVB, having scored 45 goals in 176 appearances in all competitions for Gladbach.

He told VTM Nieuws: "I still have one year left on my contract, but I have already indicated that I would like to take a new step in my career.

"We now have to wait for an agreement between the clubs. That takes time, but that's just how it goes with negotiations."

Meanwhile, Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc has again dismissed speculation linking several major clubs with an interest in young English forward Jadon Sancho.

He told Sky Sports: "We do not expect anything and we do not want anything, because he is in our plans. He will play for Borussia Dortmund next season, nobody needs to get in touch."

Sancho has been a huge hit for BVB since his arrival from Manchester City in the summer of 2017, scoring 13 goals in 52 appearances to date for Die Schwarzgelben.

This season he has netted 12 times and provided 19 assists in 40 outings for BVB in all competitions.

Dortmund are currently priced at 9/1 to win the Bundesliga title this season, with Bayern Munich available at 1/20.

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Bundesliga: Will Revierderby Be Dortmund’s Title Undoing?

Borussia Dortmund vs Schalke 04

Borussia Dortmund are doing their part to keep the Bundesliga title race drama going as long as possible. After their loss to Bayern, Dortmund have won their last two matches to keep the pressure on the Bavarians.

Dortmund will have to keep their winning run going for the remainder of the season and hope Bayern slip up. Their next assignment will be a big one as it sees them host bitter rivals Schalke to the Signal Iduna Park for the second Revierderby of the season.

Schalke have had a horrific campaign and don’t figure to pose much of a threat to Dortmund on paper. But despite their poor form as well as the lopsided Bundesliga 2019 betting odds, you never quite know what can happen in a derby, which is why us Bundesliga fans must stay tuned in to this game.

Talking Points

BVB have bounced back

Dortmund seem to have recovered fairly well following their loss to Bayern in Der Klassiker at the start of the month. They’ve won their last two games, beating Mainz 2-1 at home and Freiburg 4-0 last weekend.

After bagging a brace against Mainz, Jadon Sancho started the scoring against Freiburg. Marco Reus, Mario Gotze, and Paco Alcacer added the other three second-half goals to secure the convincing win.

It certainly bodes well for Dortmund that all four of their top attacking weapons got on the score sheet and should be in good spirits heading into the derby.

Obviously, the pressure will be on Dortmund to continue keeping the pressure on Bayern atop the table, so only a win at the derby will do.

But luckily, Dortmund will be at home, where they have been unbeatable in the league this season, so some of the pressure should be off of them.

Dortmund possess the best home record in the entire Bundesliga with 13 wins and just two draws. They’ve also scored 47 goals in their 15 games, getting at least two goals in all of those home matches.

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Schalke still struggling

Schalke’s horrific season is mercifully almost over. After soaring up to a second-place finish last year, Die Königsblauen have crashed all the way down to 15th, six points clear of the relegation play-off spot.

Interim coach Huub Stevens’ side will head into the derby with their recent Bundesliga 2019 results making for tough reading. They’ve won just one of their last 13 games in all competitions, and 10 of them have ended up in defeat.

Even the Veltins-Arena has not been safe from humiliating defeats. Schalke suffered one of their worst home defeats of the season last weekend as they got trounced 5-2 by Hoffenheim.

Clearly, the only thing that can make this nightmare season worse for Schalke is if they are once again defeated by their bitter rivals, who then go on to win the Bundesliga title.

Since it is the derby and Dortmund’s title hopes are on the line, one would think that Schalke should be sufficiently motivated to play spoiler against their rivals. It might not completely make up for this season’s failures, but it could certainly help ease the disappointment.

As recent Revierderby results have shown, Schalke have been a real thorn in the side of Dortmund, who should be wary of the threat they pose.

Will it be a win now for Huub Stevens' Schalke 04 against rivals Borussia Dortmund in Bundesliga?

Schalke 04 boss Huub Stevens looking disappointed after their 1-1 draw against Nurnberg

History

The recent history of the Revierderby has been quite competitive. In their last 15 league meetings, Dortmund have won six times, Schalke have won four times, and the two have drawn five times.

Schalke will have very fond memories of their last visit to the Signal Iduna Park last season, which turned into one of the most incredible Revierderbys in recent years. After Dortmund went up 4-0 after just 25 minutes, Schalke stormed back in miraculous fashion to level it up at 4-4 in the final half hour.

Schalke have won just once in their last eight visits to the Westfalenstadion, but they have drawn more games (four) than they’ve lost (three), which is somewhat promising for them.

Betting Tip

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Borussia Dortmund vs Schalke 04 Borussia Dortmund Asian Handicap -1.50 @ 1.93
April 27, 21:30 (GMT+8)

It should be stressed that this match is no sure thing for Dortmund. As poor as Schalke have been this season, nothing can ever be completely ruled out whenever two rivals meet in the derby.

But having said that, it still feels as though Dortmund should win this edition of the Revierderby at home in relatively comfortable fashion.

They certainly have the superior quality to turn Schalke over, especially at home, where Dortmund have been brilliant all season.

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?? = €20 (Highly confident) ?? = €10 (CONFIDENT) ?? = €5 (SOMEWHAT CONFIDENT)

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Nothing to lose for Delaney

Borussia Dortmund's Thomas Delaney says his side have nothing to lose as they battle Bayern Munich for the Bundesliga title.

Der BVB set the pace for most of the season – at one stage sitting seven points clear – but their recent 5-0 reverse in Bavaria means they are now a point behind with four games of the season remaining.

Lucian Favre's side face Werder Bremen, Fortuna Dusseldorf and Borussia Monchengladbach in the run-in but before that have Saturday's Revierderby against Schalke to look forward to.

Dortmund are 10/29 to win the match, with the draw 23/5 and Die Konigsblauen 9/1 and will be hoping for a Bayern slip-up away at Nurnberg on Sunday.

Delaney won the Danish Superliga five times while at Copenhagen and joined Favre's team from Werder Bremen in the summer.

Borussia's young squad has perhaps understandably felt the nerves in recent weeks, with the club aiming for a first Bundesliga crown since 2011-12.

After going from clear at the top to hunting the opposition, their Danish midfield maestro says Der BVB need to find a way to play without fear in the final weeks of the season.

He told the Bundesliga's website: "When you are in a situation where you have a seven-point lead at the top and then suddenly you are trailing by one, you feel the pressure and there are a lot of questions being asked by people from the outside.

"It's make-or-break and, whilst you need talent, you don't get far without a good mentality and a good work ethic.

"We've done a good job so far, but we could've done better and we could've done a lot worse. I want us to play with the mentality of having nothing to lose because that makes us a better team."

Dortmund are 4/1 to win the Bundesliga, with Bayern available at 1/6.

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There’s No Room for Bundesliga Slip-ups Now

SC Freiburg vs Borussia Dortmund

They are not making it easy for themselves – far from it in fact.

However, Borussia Dortmund have a real chance of ending Bayern Munich’s six-year domestic dominance.

As we enter the final stages of the Bundesliga campaign, Lucien Favre’s men remain in the hunt for a first title since 2012.

Yet it is exactly fixtures like this where they have struggled in the past and cannot afford to slip up this time around.

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Talking Points

They had some nervous moments late on but Dortmund overcame Mainz last weekend thanks to a super show from the young talent Jadon Sancho.

Now they need a similar result, particularly as they will be playing after Munich and find themselves four points adrift.

Although Freiburg have not won in four matches, they held Bayern to a 1-1 draw a little over a fortnight ago, so the visitors will know this encounter will provide a challenge.

Raphael Guerreiro and Christian Pulisic, who has agreed a move to sign for Chelsea next season, both missed out last weekend and in the 5-0 drubbing to Bayern a fortnight ago.

And in further good news for the challengers, top scorer Paco Alcacer will hope to make it off the bench at the very least. He missed the Bayern game through injury and watched as an unused substitute against Mainz but has three goals in his last two starts.

In goalkeeper Roman Bürki, Maximilian Philipp and Ömer Toprak, there are three former Freiburg players who will be keen to remind their former employers of their talents, while Favre’s team will be guaranteed Champions League football next season should they avoid defeat.

Avoiding defeat is unlikely to be enough, however, as only victory will realistically suffice.

In contrast, Freiburg may well be without their joint-top scorer Nils Petersen who isn’t expected to recover in time.

SC Freiburg are unbeaten in their last four home matches in Bundesliga

Christian Streich giving instruction from the touchline

Christian Streich’s side will miss him but will still pose a threat at set-pieces. They have been one of the Bundesliga most dangerous sides at set-pieces this term and last season Freiburg hit a league-high 18 of their 32 goals (56.3 per cent) from dead-balls.

They will certainly hope Luca Waldschmidt is back. Twelve different players have scored for Freiburg so far this season but it’s Petersen and Waldschmidt who have accounted for 16 of the south-west club’s 39 leagues goals.

The expectation is for a Dortmund triumph – can they deliver when the pressure is on?

History

You have to go back to May 2010 for the last time Freiburg defeated Dortmund. That was a 3-1 success. Since then, the clubs have met on 15 occasions with two draws and Dortmund winning the other 13 times.

Both those matches were last season. This corresponding fixture ended goalless before Freiburg snatched a 2-2 draw at the Signal Iduna Park thanks to a Petersen double.

In fact, it would have been more had Jeremy Toljan not scored a last minute equaliser.

Earlier this season, Dortmund ran out 2-0 winners with captain Marco Reus (penalty) and Alcacer on target.

Dortmund are unbeaten in their last 15 matches against Freiburg, but Favre has not won in Germany’s sunniest city in four attempts as a coach (drawn one, lost three).

Betting Tip

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SC Freiburg vs Borussia Dortmund Borussia Dortmund, Asian Handicap -1.00 @ 1.92
April 21, 21:30 (GMT+8)

The us Bundesliga betting odds on the title race remain intriguing and close to call.

There’s nothing close about what is available for this one though.

Dortmund are priced 1X2 @ 1.53 and Asian Handicap odds offers prices of -1.00 @ 1.89 and -1.25 @ 2.20.

In contrast, as the Black Forest club look for the win that would secure their safety for another season with room to spare, they are priced 1X2 @ 5.80. Even the draw is offered at an unlikely @ 4.20.

Asian Handicap on a Freiburg success sees bets of +1.00 @ 2.04 and + 1.75 @ 2.33.

If you expect goals in a contest in which sides have been far from convincing at the back, then look at over 3.00 goals @ 2.00 or over 3.25 goals @ 2.29.

There’s also total goal 2-3 @ 2.06 and total goal 4-6 @ 2.75 to assess, while the Double Chance or Draw – Freiburg or Draw – is offered @ 2.39.

A repeat of last season’s draw in this fixture – correct score 0-0 – is available @ 16.00. For Dortmund to repeat their victory earlier in the season – correct score 0-2 – you will find odds of @ 8.00.

Anything other than victory and the prize drifts closer to Munich.

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Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

 

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