Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich begin their quest for a seventh consecutive title but face a difficult start to the season with the visit of Hoffenheim. Highly rated young boss Julian Nagelsmann takes charge of his final campaign with the South West German outfit before moving to RB Leipzig for the 2019-20 term.
Where and when: Allianz Arena – 24 August, kick-off 19:30
Where you can see Bayern vs. Hoffenheim: BT Sport 2
Last time: Die Kraichgauer took a shock 2-0 lead after twenty minutes through Mark Uth and Serge Gnabry before the inevitable onslaught from Munich. The Bavarians quickly equalised through Robert Lewandowski and Jerome Boateng with second-half efforts from Kingsley Coman, Arturo Vidal and Sandro Wagner sealing proceedings.
|Arjen Robben to score anytime||19/20||Offer|
|Both teams to score||7/10||Offer|
|Bayern to win 2-0||7/1||Offer|
Bayern v Hoffenheim Predictions and Preview
Niko Kovac starts life as Bayern boss after impressing during his two years in the dugout at Eintracht Frankfurt. The Croatian made history with his previous club, beating Munich 3-1 and in convincing fashion during the DFB-Pokal Final. The result sealed a first piece of silverware in 30 years for the Eagles, further highlighting the remarkable job the 46-year-old had carried out.
The summer transfer window remains open in Germany and Spain, and barring a miracle, Lewandowski will remain at Bayern for at least one more campaign. The Poland superstar intimated he was ready for a fresh challenge after the World Cup with Real Madrid his preferred destination. With a replacement for Cristiano Ronaldo still not in place, the striker’s name remains in the spotlight but the 30-year-old is certain to feature in the opening fixture of the new Bundesliga term. Lewandowski is the overwhelming favourite to strike first at 19/10 and 10/3 to net a hat-trick. Team-mate James Rodriguez is also a popular figure in the betting and is 5/4 in the anytime market. The hosts are 2/9 to seal all three points.
Visitors Hoffenheim finished in third and have another Champions League campaign to look forward to. Nagelsmann, who was strongly linked to the Munich post before Kovac was appointed, will task Andrej Kramarić and new signing Ishak Belfodil with troubling the hosts’ backline and the duo can be found at 13/1 and 15/1 respectively to give Die Kraichgauer a shock lead. Hoffenheim are 11/1 to upset the giants of German football.
One to watch for Bayern: Arjen Robben. The Dutch winger may be 34-years-old but still possesses all the trickery and skill that made him a household name. Robben is 4/1 to bag last.
One to watch for Hoffenheim: Joelinton. The Brazilian has returned from a two-year loan at Rapid Vienna and gone straight in to the first-team reckoning. The striker is 11/1 in the same market.
Long shot: Bayern recorded 27 wins, three draws and four defeats from their 34 games last season with a 2-0 defeat coming from Hoffenheim last September. The Bavarians may be the favourites on the night, but this clash isn’t a foregone conclusion and Nagelsmann certainly won’t be overawed by the occasion. An entertaining 2-2 draw is 19/1.