Bundesliga Betting: Panicking Wolves to fall at the costliest hurdle

Wolfsburg coach Bruno Labbadia
Bruno Labbadia has been struggling to find the answers at Wolfsburg
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It's the final weekend of the Bundesliga season, and as Kevin Hatchard explains, there are still issues to be decided in both halves of the table.

"Wolfsburg haven't won a home game in 2018, and they have collapsed completely in the last three weeks."

Lay Wolfsburg v FC Koln at [1.67]

Wolfsburg v FC Koln
Saturday May 12, 14:30
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Wolves sliding towards disaster

Pressure does funny things to people, and Wolfsburg have wilted in the last few weeks, with the glare of the relegation spotlight pointing in their direction. Their 4-1 hammering at RB Leipzig last weekend was typical of their recent displays - they started quite well, but once the opening goal went against them, they made mistake after mistake.

Wolfsburg coach Bruno Labbadia was able to rescue Hamburg from the drop in 2015, and his innovative approach to preparation for high-pressure games worked a treat. This time around, his box of tricks isn't working. He's tried taking the team to village retreats to give them space to clear their minds, he booked out a cinema to show them an inspirational Hollywood sports film, but the team still seems jittery and disjointed. Three straight defeats have been suffered at the worst possible time. To make matters worse, star midfielder Daniel Didavi is struggling with an Achilles tendon injury.

You would think that a home game against a team that's already been relegated would be the perfect opportunity to pick up the win that will guarantee the avoidance of automatic relegation, but I don't see it that way. FC Koln insist they'll give 100% to be fair to Hamburg (second-bottom) and Freiburg (three points above Wolfsburg and fourth-from-bottom), and I believe them.

Koln have actually played pretty well since long-serving coach Peter Stoger departed, taking 19 points from 19 games under his replacement Stefan Ruthenbeck. If that points-per-game average was over stretched a whole season, Koln would currently be three points clear of the dropzone.

Wolfsburg are playing without confidence or cohesion, and they haven't won a home game since the first week of December. There has been little evidence of Labbadia's methods working, and so I can't support the home win at skinny odds of [1.67].

Schalke v Eintracht Frankfurt
Saturday May 12, 14:30
Live on Betfair Live Video

Royal Blues to sign off in style

Schalke's Domenico Tedesco has to be part of the conversation when it comes to who is the Bundesliga's Coach of the Season. The 32-year-old has secured a second-place finish in his first ever campaign as a boss in the top flight, and he has done so with a squad that can in no way be described as the second-best in the league.

Tedesco's brand of football can be deathly dull to watch, but it has been effective. There's an argument to say that when quicker forwards are signed (Hoffenheim's Mark Uth is a confirmed summer signing, and my understanding is that his team-mate Nadiem Amiri is on the Royal Blues' wishlist), Tedesco will be able to add further sparkle to what is a very solid base.

Frankfurt have a DFB Cup final to look forward to next weekend, but they must try to make sure they qualify for the Europa League through the league, just in case they lose that final to Bayern Munich. If they fail to win at the Veltins Arena, they could be caught by Stuttgart and Borussia Monchengladbach.

It's worth remembering that Frankfurt won 1-0 in Gelsenkirchen in the DFB Cup semi-final, so Schalke will have revenge on their minds, and Frankfurt's general away form of late has been poor. They have lost their last six Bundesliga away matches, and you have to go back to January for the last time they took maximum points on the road.

I would back the hosts outright, but under Tedesco they keep games incredibly tight and close, so I'll guard against a stalemate by using the Draw No Bet market.

Hoffenheim v Borussia Dortmund
Saturday May 12, 14:30
Live on Betfair Live Video

Dortmund to endure scary afternoon

It says a lot for how Borussia Dortmund have struggled for most of the season that they still haven't nailed down a Champions League spot for next season. Every time they have looked like they have finally got their act together, they have blown it. Last weekend's home defeat to Mainz was a real shock to the system, and it means that BVB could still miss out on a top-four spot if they lose by two goals (Hoffenheim would move above them into third) and Bayer Leverkusen absolutely stuff Hannover.

Dortmund have only won one of their last four matches in the league, and they've only collected two points from their last four away games in the league. Their cause won't be helped by a suspension for Sokratis and an injury to his fellow centre-back Omer Toprak. There may be a rare appearance for teenager Dan-Axel Zagadou, who has barely featured since Stoger took the reins.

Hoffenheim have done remarkably well to even be in contention for a second straight top-four finish (they have lost three key players to Bayern), and they know a win will get the job done. Last weekend's 2-0 derby loss at Stuttgart was a major blow, as it was their first defeat since mid-February.

However, TSG have no fresh injury worries, and they have won their last four home games. Their outstanding coach Julian Nagelsmann can win the tactical battle against Stoger, and I think Dortmund may fold under pressure as they did last week. I'll back a home win.

2017-18 Bundesliga P/L

Points Staked: 107
Points Returned: 99.47
P/L: -7.53 points

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