Borussia Monchengladbach will have to pick themselves up after a morale sapping midweek Europa League exit when they host league champions Bayern this weekend.
While one would probably count Dortmund and Leipzig as Bayern’s main challengers for the crown this season, the Bavarians’ clash against Monchengladbach used to be one of German football’s biggest rivalries, especially in the 70’s when the likes of Beckenbauer and Muller squared off against Heynckes and Vogts.
Bayern have been cruising in recent times- their last five games in all competitions (four in the BuLi and one Champions League) have seen Carlo Ancelotti’s side win all five, score 22 goals and concede just the one. They’re ten points ahead of their nearest rivals and will seek to make it six in a row before the players disperse for the international break
Interestingly enough, Gladbach have been one of the sides who have given Bayern a run for their money in recent times. The Foals’ 2:0 loss at the Allianz back in December was their first defeat in five against the Bavarians, and you need to go back all the way to January 2014 for Bayern’s last victory at Stadion IM Borussia Park.
Bayern 2:0 Gladbach (first loss in five for MGB- Video Source)
Polish forward Robert Lewandowski, Bayern’s top scorer in the league this season with 21, has NEVER scored against Gladbach in his career and will be keen to set right that statistic.
While Bayern have enjoyed an eight day gap in the lead up to this game (they played Frankfurt last Saturday), Gladbach have been run ragged by the pressures of European football and the air at Stadion im Borussia Park is gloomy following a heartbreaking Europa League exit to fellow German side Schalke.
Following a 1:1 draw at the Veltins Arena, all seemed to be going right for Gladbach when they went 2:0 in the second leg. However a terrible bounce and a controversial penalty sealed their fate, with Schalke’s two goals sending them through to the last eight.
Gladbach were on a four game winning streak in all competitions before the commencement of their EL tie against Schalke, and to compound matters, also lost 2:1 at struggling HSV last weekend.
Using past statistical data and expert insights of FootballPredictions.com, we reckon this will be a tightly fought affair, although Bayern should have the better of their opponents. Gladbach have lost only thrice in the Bundesliga this season and all three of those- to Koln, Wolfsburg and Leipzig, came just before or after a European engagement in midweek. Arturo Vidal is suspended for the visitors.
After the Bayern clash, it doesn’t get any easier for the Foals, with in form Hertha Berlin and Borussia Dortmund awaiting them after the international break.
Borussia Monchengladbach vs Bayern Munich (19 March, 2017 at 17.30 local)