The race for second place in a number of European leagues is currently more exciting than the battle for the top. So it’s no surprise this week’s feature includes a number of tussles involving those sides.
Indeed, in Germany, Spain, France and England there are four matches involving eight sides who will be hopeful of being the best of the rest. There’s also one of La Liga’s most intriguing derbies involving the league leaders.
All kick-offs are in Eastern time. Enjoy your weekend and enjoy the games!
It’s tough to remember in recent years a division that has been as tight as the current Bundesliga. Subsequently, Monchengladbach, in seventh, and Leipzig, in fifth, will each feel they have a brilliant chance of finishing behind Bayern Munich.
That’s because Leverkusen, who are currently in second, are just eight points clear of Hertha Berlin, who sit in 12. Leipzig are just two points back and BMG are three points behind; it makes this encounter at Borussia Park a crucial one for the two sides involved.
Both of these teams have struggled for consistency as of late, though. Last season, Leipzig were comfortably the best team behind Bayern, although they’ve failed to reach the same levels lately. Their 1-1 draw at home to Hamburg last week was indicative of their issues, as they failed to convert their dominance into three points.
Monchengladbach have endured similar problems, as their season has lacked any fillip of momentum throughout. At home, Dieter Hecking has made this team tough to beat, and a win over Leipzig is the type of result that give a team like BMG the confidence needed to finally put a positive run together.
Barcelona remain imperious in La Liga, but on Sunday they will not only face their local rivals, they’ll face the only team to have beaten them in 2017-18 in Espanyol.
Indeed, in the first leg of their recent Copa del Rey meeting, Espanyol were able to derail Barcelona, battling to a 1-0 win in front of their supporters. The Blaugrana did overturn the deficit in the second leg, but the underdogs should take some confidence into this contest on Sunday at the RCDE Stadium.