Two squads at vastly opposite ends of the Bundesliga table will face-off Sunday morning in a game that on paper, many might see as a big mismatch.
Borussia Dortmund enter in second-place, coming into this game after a narrow defeat to Bayern Munich. Many pundits saw that as Dortmund’s chance to end Bayern’s lengthy title reign, and though they played well in the contest – a loss drops them a full ten points back now.
Now Lucien Favre’s side will pivot and instead focus on ensuring Champions League qualification. There is a bitter battle brewing down the stretch between teams two through five in the Bundesliga, and only 4 will secure the right to qualify. With Gladbach, Leverkusen, and Leipzig all hot on their heels, Dortmund know they can’t rest just yet.
Their opponents on Sunday are the worst team in the league, and by some margin too. Paderborn sit 18th and are quite likely a good bet to definitely get relegated, as they’re eight points from safety with a few weeks left of action. That said, they have mustered three straight draws, and continue to show impressive resolve and fight down the home stretch. With Dortmund’s talent coming to their home stadium, the Paderborn players should be especially fired up to surprise.
Interestingly enough, the reverse clash between these groups in November saw Paderborn go three goals up, before blowing that lead for the game to finish a 3-3 draw. Both sides surely remember that thrilling affair, and it should bring in some added intrigue to Sunday’s clash. It’s 18th v. 2nd in the league table, but that does not mean it won’t be competitive. There’s still lots on the line for both sides, so keep reading beneath the odds for a match preview and betting breakdown for Paderborn vs. Borussia Dortmund.
SC Paderborn vs. Borussia Dortmund Betting Odds:
Paderborn +1.5 (+101)
Dortmund -1.5 (-121)
Over 3.5 (+108)
Under 3.5 (-128)
*Betting odds provided by BetOnline.ag
SC Paderborn vs. Borussia Dortmund Pick:
While the stats, numbers, and advanced metrics all point to a routine crushing for Borussia Dortmund, there is a big psychological/fatigue element at play too. You do have to wonder how this side will so quickly shake off Tuesday’s disappointing loss to Bayern Munich, and ‘get up’ for a game against last-place Paderborn. It seems unlikely, and it seems natural for a bit of a dip from Dortmund’s talented group.
For Paderborn, they’ll line up in a 4-4-2 formation, especially as they will want to ensure they are secure at the back with all of Dortmund’s skill. Up top, they actually do have some solid finishers and creative attackers, led by Streli Bamba, who scored twice last time out against Dortmund. If Favre’s side get caught napping, Bamba has the pace to make this a brutal week for his club.
For Borussia Dortmund, they’ll have a huge loss in their attack without Erling Haaland up top. The dominant Norwegian teenage striker reportedly suffered a knee injury against Bayern Munich. Making matters worse, influential midfielder Mahmoud Dahoub is also out for the black and yellow, leaving some big holes in their lineup.
Look for Lucien Favre to again employ a 3-4-3 formation, with a big focus on free-flowing and attacking football. They’ll employ a feisty and defensive centre of their midfield with Emre Can and Thomas Delaney doing their best to disrupt Paderborn, while their front trio of Julian Brandt, Thorgan Hazard, and Jadon Sancho will pose real problems for the home side.
Paderborn are likely facing relegation, but they are still battling – as seen by three consecutive draws. They will be motivated to take on such an impressive Dortmund side, and will be keen to add to their misery following the Bayern Munich debacle. Expect a sluggish Dortmund side, especially without Marco Reus and Erling Haaland, but ultimately they’ll do just enough to secure victory. Paderborn will make them fight, and could even find the back of their net themselves. Expect a narrow 2-1 victory for Dortmund, with ‘both teams to score’ and Paderborn plus-1.5 goals both representing solid value.
Prediction: Borussia Dortmund 2-1