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Dortmund face another tough test against Leipzig; leaders travel to high-flying Stuttgart in Bundesliga 2023-24 SuperMatchday 14

Published at :December 7, 2023 at 6:43 PM
Modified at :January 14, 2024 at 12:15 AM
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Everything could change at the top of the Bundesliga table on Matchday 14 with some massive games as six of the current top seven face off in a potentially season-defining weekend in the German top flight.

Bayer 04 Leverkusen dropped points at home for the first time this season when they were held 1-1 by Borussia Dortmund last weekend, but Xabi Alonso’s men were still able to extend their lead at the top of the table to three points. It means they are in jeopardy of losing their lofty perch, at least for 24 hours, with second-placed FC Bayern München playing on Saturday.

Heavy snow in Bavaria prevented Harry Kane from even having a chance to add to his league-leading, record-breaking 18 goals as the record champions’ home game with 1. FC Union Berlin last weekend was postponed. But if the free-scoring England captain & Co. win at seventh-placed Eintracht Frankfurt – where Bayern triumphed 6-1 in the opening game of last season – Thomas Tuchel’s side will go top of the table on goal difference having played only 13 matches.

Leverkusen have further problems as they travel to third-placed VfB Stuttgart. The league leaders have not lost a Bundesliga game to their Matchday 14 hosts since 2018, and have actually only dropped points in two of the duo’s last eight top-flight encounters. But Sebastian Hoeneß’s men picked up their third successive win by beating SV Werder Bremen last weekend to equal the club record of 10 wins from the opening 13 league games and leave themselves just five points off the top spot.

They are four points ahead of fourth-placed RB Leipzig, and Stuttgart will likely be hoping Die Roten Bullen‘s trip to the Signal Iduna Park for Saturday’s top-of-the-bill encounter ends in a draw. Dortmund are fifth, just a point behind their Matchday 14 visitors, following the draw at Leverkusen, which was the first time BVB had not lost to a side topping the standings since April 2014.

TSG Hoffenheim are the only team in the top seven not facing one of their immediate neighbours in the table. Pellegrino Matarazzo’s men – currently in sixth place – can narrow the five-point gap to the top five as they open the Matchday 14 action at home to VfL Bochum 1848 on Friday. The visitors, however, are fresh off a 3-1 win over VfL Wolfsburg, the first time this season they have struck three times in a single Bundesliga game, and they have lost just once in their last seven.

Coach Nenad Bjelica will hope to make his debut on the Union bench as the league’s bottom side welcomes Borussia Mönchengladbach to the capital. A win over the inconsistent Foals, who have won three, drawn two and lost two of their last seven, could actually lift Union out of the bottom three.

Just like the top of the table, there are some huge games at the bottom this weekend. Second-from-bottom 1. FSV Mainz 05 head to 1. FC Köln with the Billy Goats in 15th place, just a point clear of their opponents. That all may have already changed by the time they bring the curtain down on Matchday 14 on Sunday as either side of Steffen Baumgart’s men, SV Darmstadt 98 in 16th and 1. FC Heidenheim 1846 in 14th – separated by only two points – face off at the latter’s Voith-Arena on Saturday.

Eighth-placed SC Freiburg and FC Augsburg – up to ninth and yet to lose in six games under Jess Thorup –have opportunities to inch towards the European qualifying places on Saturday when they travel to Wolfsburg and Bremen respectively.

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