Bayern Munich v Eintracht Frankfurt: Leaders set to release handbrake

Hansi Flick
Hansi Flick's arrival in November helped turn Bayern's fortunes
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Andy Schooler previews Saturday evening's Bundesliga game between Bayern and Eintracht and says backing the leaders for another big win is where the value lies...

"Bayern have already beaten seven of the bottom 11 in the Bundesliga by four or more this season. In addition, two of the last four meetings between these sides at the Allianz Arena have seen Bayern win by four or more."

Back Bayern (-3) @ 11/4

Bayern Munich v Eintracht Frankfurt
Saturday, 17:30
Live on BT Sport 1

When the German Bundesliga season finally ends - and that end is now thankfully in sight - Eintracht Frankfurt's 5-1 victory over Bayern Munich in November could well be its defining moment.

Flick the switch

With Bayern four points off the pace following their humbling at the Commerzbank Arena, Niko Kovac was sacked and replaced by Hansi Flick.

Sixteen games later and Bayern's four-point deficit has become a four-point lead. They also have one foot in the Champions League quarter-finals and, by the time that competition was suspended, looked to have every chance of winning it.

Flick, Joachim Loew's former assistant with the German national team, has Bayern playing free-flowing, attacking football again and in those 16 games under his tutelage, the Bavarian side have banged in 50 goals.

They come into this one having won 11 of their last 12 in the league, while they are on a seven-game winning run in all competitions.

Of course, the COVID-related break will, in certain quarters, call into question the relevance of those statistics.

What is certainly fair to say is that last week's game at Union Berlin is most important in terms of a form line and Bayern came through that test without really releasing the handbrake.

They controlled the game and while they were not at their fluent best, creating fewer chances than normal, they were clinical and never looked anything other than winners of the match, 2-0 being the final score.

Philippe Coutinho and Corentin Tolisso missed that contest and will remain absent here, while Javi Martinez and Niklas Sule are both doubts. Neither played last week.

Given the circumstances, it would not be a surprise to see the likes of Kingsley Coman and Ivan Perisic to come into the starting XI, although surely goal machine Robert Lewandowski, who now has 40 goals in all competitions for the season, will start.

His supply lines have been excellent with Thomas Muller, Serge Gnabry and Joshua Kimmich are regular assisters, not to mention goalscorers.

Duo out for struggling visitors

Eintracht remain without joint top scorer Goncalo Paciencia, while Dominik Kohr is banned after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season in last weekend's 3-1 home defeat to Borussia Monchengladbach.

That loss was a fourth in a row for Eintracht in the Bundesliga. They have lost the majority (13 of 25) of their league games are now just five points outside the relegation zone.

Most worrying for them is their woeful away record - the worst in the division - which has seen them pick up just seven points from 12 games, nine of which have been lost.

Hosts hot favourites

It's not hard to see why they are [20.0] to win the game with Bayern red-hot favourites at [1.17].

Eintracht's last two away leagues games both ended in 4-0 defeats and that is a nod to where the value lies.

Bayern have already beaten seven of the bottom 11 in the Bundesliga by four or more this season.

In addition, two of the last four meetings between these sides at the Allianz Arena have seen Bayern win by four or more.

Of course, the lack of fans means there will be a different atmosphere for both teams to deal with on this occasion but the contrast in form of the pair is extreme.

Handicap offers value

To borrow racing parlance, Bayern should have come on for last week's run when they weren't seriously tested and with the rust removed, they may well be ready to move through the gears against opponents devoid of confidence.

Bayern (-3) on the handicap is offered at [3.45] on the Exchange and an even better 11/4 with the Sportsbook and that looks a decent way of getting them onside.

It certainly appears to hold more value than the goal lines where even over 3.5 is just a [1.72] chance. For the record, over 2.5 can be backed at [1.3].

Play your cards right

One other angle worth mentioning is a cards one.

The Sportsbook has some tasty-looking prices about some of the home players being carded - contrary to what you might think, the leaders are far from the cleanest team in the league and actually sit in the middle of the fair-play table.

Unfortunately the Bundesliga is not announcing its referees until the morning of the game and a lenient official can make a big difference in these markets.

However, as things stand, there's little doubt that both Thiago Alcantara (5/1) and Jerome Boateng (6/1; [7.4] on the Exchange) are overpriced to be carded.

1280 Jerome Boateng Bayern Munich.jpg

Midfielder Thiago has been booked in seven of his 20 Bundesliga starts this season, three times at home, while centre-back Boateng has collected a card in six of his 16 such starts (two at home).

Preference would be for the latter for he was the man sent off early in that 5-1 defeat in the reverse fixture.

It's not hard to see the German international feeling his has a point to prove, while he'll surely be taunted about his costly mistake by the visiting players.

If a strict ref is appointed, 6/1 will look big indeed come kick-off.

Opta fact

Bayern have won 12 of their 13 Bundesliga home games against Frankfurt at the Allianz Arena (D1), with an aggregate scoreline of 40-6.

Stats and prediction: Bayern Munich v Eintracht Frankfurt

Andy Schooler's P/L 2019/20

Staked: 69.5pts
Returned: 68.94pts
P/L: -0.56pts

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