Bundesliga 2016/17 opening weekend preview

Screen Shot 2016-03-07 at 14.49.51 by MACAULAY DALEY

Bayern Munich will undoubtedly go into the new Bundesliga season as favourites for a fourth consecutive title, but they’ll be followed closely behind by their rivals Borussia Dortmund.

Bayern get the league underway on Friday night at home to Werder Bremen and will be looking to lay down the gauntlet to Thomas Tuchels’s side before they face Mainz on Saturday.

There’s a new man in the Allianz Arena dugout this season, with Carlo Ancelotti the man tasked with replacing Pep Guardiola following his move to Manchester City.

With continuing success across Europe in charge of AC Milan, Chelsea, PSG and Real Madrid, Bayern fans will be hopeful that Ancelotti is the right man for the job and ultimately win them the one thing that Guardiola couldn’t; the Champions League.

Gotze
Gotze has rejoined Dortmund from rivals Bayern this summer. (Image Credit: dailymail.co.uk)

There’s been more notable outgoings that incomings at the Allianz, with Mario Gotze and Sebastian Rode departing for Dortmund, with Mehdi Benatia and Pierre-Emile Hojgberg moving on to Juventus and Southampton respectively.

Through the door come former player Mats Hummels and highly rated youngster Renato Sanches from Benfica.

Hummels’ former club Dortmund have arguably their strongest squad since their Bundesliga winning days back in 2012.

They’ve recruited very strongly in the post season window, bringing in the previously mentioned Gotze and Rode, Andre Schurrle (Wolfsburg), Ousmane Dembele (Rennes), Raphael Guerreiro (Lorient), Marc Bartra (Barcelona), Emre Moir (Nordsjaelland) and Mikel Merino (Osasuna).

However they have suffered notable departures, with Hummels, Henrikh Mkhitaryan (Manchester United) and Ilkay Gundogan (Manchester City) all leaving for pastures new.

Regardless of this, the team should have enough firepower to keep up with the Bavarians for the majority of the campaign and will look to end their domestic dominance.

Borussia Monchengladbach will hope for a better start to this season than the last, when they host Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday evening.

Die Fohlenelf lost their opening five games at the beginning of the last year’s campaign, but will look to add to their 6-1 thrashing of Young Boys in the Champions League when they host Roger Schmidt’s men.

Leipzig
Leipzig could surprise neutrals this season. (Image credit: worldsoccertalk.com)

Red Bull Leipzig travel to Hoffenheim in their maiden Bundesliga game on Sunday. Astonishingly the club was founded in 2009, meaning they have reached the pinnacle of German sport in just seven years.

Other fixtures:

FC Augsburg vs Vfl Wolfsburg

Eintracht Frankfurt vs FC Schalke 04

Hamburger SV vs FC Ingolstadt 04

FC Koln vs Darmstadt

Hertha BSC Berlin vs SC Freiburg

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