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Bundesliga weekend preview: Bayern face stern test as winter break ends

After a two-month break, the Bundesliga returns on Friday, and it returns in style as RB Leipzig host league-leaders Bayern Munich.

There is also plenty to play for at the other end of the table, as only seven points separate third and ninth. The gap between 10th and the relegation zone is only six points, so it is fair to say we could be in for a dramatic few months in Germany's top flight.

With nine matches scheduled this weekend, we take a look at some of the standout games, starting with Friday's battle at the Red Bull Arena.

Leaders up against it after mid-season break

WhatRB Leipzig v Bayern Munich
WhereRed Bull Arena, Leipzig
When19:30, Friday 20th January 2023
How to watchSky Sports Mix & bet365 live Sports Streaming
OddsRB Leipzig 11/4, Draw 10/3, Bayern Munich 4/5

The wait is finally over for Bundesliga fans, and games do not come much better than Friday's contest between RB Leipzig and Bayern Munich.

Bayern are top of the table and have a four-point cushion over SC Freiburg, and they remain the best team in Germany. Julian Nagelsmann's troops have won 10 of their 15 matches so far, and they have won six games in a row in the German top flight.

While they are the favourites for Friday's battle, Leipzig are unbeaten in eight in the Bundesliga, and they also have the division's top scorer within their ranks. 

Christopher Nkunku has scored 12 times in 15 appearances, and he has scored twice in Leipzig's last two meetings with the Bavarians. 

Rather than backing a winner, it looks sensible to turn to the goals market. Over 3.5 goals is available at 1/1, and that bet would have landed in four of the last five meetings between the pair.

Race for Europe hots up in Wolfsburg

WhatWolfsburg v SC Freiburg
WhereVolkswagen Arena, Wolfsburg
When14:30, Saturday 21st January 2023
How to watchEuropean Soccer Live Streaming Highlights
OddsWolfsburg 31/20, Draw 12/5, SC Freiburg 7/4

Freiburg were the surprise package in the first half of the Bundesliga campaign, and their top-four credentials will be put to the test when they travel to Wolfsburg.

Freiburg head coach Christian Streich has got his side working hard, and they deserve their second-place spot in the Bundesliga. While Breisgau-Brasilianer have been impressive, their away record is not particularly good.

Streich's side have won just one of their previous four on their travels in the Bundesliga, and they travel to a Wolfsburg side who have lost just one in nine at home in the league.

After a slow start, Wolfsburg were one of the form teams in the Bundesliga before the break, and a score draw at 10/3 appeals this weekend.

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Dortmund's returning stars can lift their spirits

WhatBorussia Dortmund v Augsburg
WhereSignal Iduna Park
When14:30, Sunday 22nd January 2023
How to watchSky Sports Football & bet365 live Sports Streaming
OddsBorussia Dortmund 3/10, Draw 5/1, Augsburg 15/2

Under the stewardship of Edin Terzic since May, Borussia Dortmund have struggled for consistency, but they will hope their fortunes can change when they host Augsburg on Sunday.

Dortmund struggled with injuries during the first few months of the campaign, but they did enough to hold onto sixth before the Bundesliga stopped for the mid-season break.

If results go their way in the coming weeks, Dortmund could soon find themselves in third, and they should have too much quality for Augsburg, who are hovering above the relegation zone.

Even though back-to-back defeats for Dortmund will have unsettled their squad, Augsburg are winless in seven in the Bundesliga.

Their last win on their travels came in October, and a home win and both teams to score looks the way to go at 7/5.

Both Marco Reus and Sebastian Haller have missed large chunks of the campaign but both are pushing to return in time for Sunday's game.

Reus' creative flair will be a much-needed addition to the Dortmund midfield, while Dortmund are yet to see Haller play for the club since his summer move.

The former Ajax man scored 32 goals in 50 appearances during his time in the Netherlands, and his return to fitness will be a significant boost for a Dortmund side that have aspirations of qualifying for the Champions League. 

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