It’s rare that you get Bayern Munich in a bounce-back spot twice in a season, let alone two times in a month.
The top team in the German top flight suffered a shocking 5-0 defeat to Borussia Monchengladbach in the DFB Pokal on Wednesday.
After Bayern’s last loss to Eintracht Frankfurt, it steamrolled through Bayer Leverkusen with five goals.
Spare a thought for the Union Berlin defenders that have to deal with a Bayern attack that carries a ton of motivation into Saturday’s Bundesliga clash.
The team that Bayern beat in its last bounce-back game, Bayer Leverkusen, is also in a bounce-back spot after a tough loss in the DFB Pokal. Leverkusen is easier to bet on the money line than Bayern, while the German league leader requires a spread bet to be profitable.
Germany will be the focus of most of the picks this weekend because of the matchups in play.
Below is a look at the rest of the plays across Europe’s five major leagues.
Weekend Soccer Picks (52-56 overall)
Bundesliga: Union Berlin vs. Bayern Munich (-2) (Saturday. 9:30 a.m. ET)
I would take Bayern Munich up to three goals on the spread.
Bayern does not take losing lightly and we saw that earlier this season in the demolition of Leverkusen.
In between its two losses, Bayern scored 13 goals and conceded once in three matches. Expect a similar level of dominance against Union Berlin on Saturday.
Union Berlin allowed 10 goals in nine Bundesliga games, but four of those concessions came against Borussia Dortmund.
Union Berlin is off to a solid start in fifth place, but the same could have been said about Leverkusen before it entered its matchup facing Bayern off a loss.
No matter how strong a team’s defense is, it can be hard, and sometimes impossible, to contain a scorned Bayern side.
Bundesliga: Bayer Leverkusen (-110) vs. Wolfsburg (Saturday. 9:30 a.m. ET)
Speaking of Leverkusen, it finds itself in its own bounce-back spot on Saturday morning.
Leverkusen unexpectedly dropped out of the DFB Pokal at the hands of Karlsruher on Wednesday. It is on a four-game winless run across all competitions, but it has the perfect chance to bounce back with a win against Wolfsburg.
Wolfsburg is in some of the worst form of any team in the big five European leagues. It is on a four-game losing streak and just fired head coach Mark van Bommel.
Wolfsburg conceded 10 goals during that run and it has not scored multiple goals in its last seven games across all competitions.
Bundesliga: Borussia Dortmund (-1) vs. FC Koln (Saturday. 9:30 a.m. ET)
No Erling Haaland, no problem so far for Borussia Dortmund.
The Black-Yellow will be without Haaland for a few weeks, but it has a handful of impressive attackers to fill the void while the world-class striker is away from the pitch.
Dortmund outscored its opponents 5-1 in the last two games without Haaland in the fold. On Saturday, it faces a FC Koln side that is much worse on the road than at home.
Koln is 0-2-2 with a -6 goal differential on the road. It is 3-2-0 with a +5 GD in home games this season.
Dortmund has not lost any of its five Bundesliga home games and it outscored opponents 17-8 in those matches.
In addition to the spread bet, keep an eye on Jude Bellingham goal scoring props. The English teenager had two shots on target against Arminia Bielefeld last weekend and he hit the crossbar with a long-distance shot versus Ingolstadt in the DFB Pokal midweek. His prop is over +300 at most books and he could be worth the play if he starts.
English Premier League: Newcastle United vs. Chelsea (Over 2.5) (Saturday, 10 a.m. ET)
Chelsea is dealing with a more dire situation at striker than Dortmund.
Romelu Lukaku and Timo Werner will both not make the trip to face Newcastle United on Saturday.
Even with both players out, the Blues put seven goals past Norwich City last weekend.
Expect to see more of the same from Thomas Tuchel’s side against Newcaslte United at St. James’ Park.
Newcastle has the second-worst goals against total in the EPL and it has yet to win a game in league play this season.
Chelsea is second to Liverpool in goals scored with 23 and it holds a 3-1-0 road record in EPL matches.
The Chelsea money line is unplayable, but it is worth going after the over because of how poor Newcastle’s defense has been.
Ligue 1: Strasbourg (-110) vs. Lorient (Sunday, 10 a.m. ET)
This is mostly a fade of a poor road team.
Lorient is 0-4-2 with a -5 goal differential in six Ligue 1 road games. It allowed multiple goals in three of those road trips.
Strasbourg is 3-1-2 on home soil and it has scored 13 of its 18 league goals at home.
I’ll ride with the trend here with the home favorite being close to even money.
Ligue 1: Brest vs. Monaco (-135) (Sunday, 12 p.m. ET)
Brest does not have a victory in Ligue 1 action.
Monaco comes into Sunday’s game with four wins in its last five Ligue 1 contests.
Since September 16, Monaco picked up a win or draw in eight of its nine matches across all competitions. Six of those results were victories.
Monaco is flying high with seven goals in its last three overall victories. Brest conceded in all of its matches this season and let in multiple tallies on six occasions.
La Liga: Real Sociedad (+110) vs. Athletic Bilbao (Sunday, 4 p.m. ET)
Real Sociedad has been one of the best stories in European soccer.
La Real sits on top of La Liga with 24 points and it has not lost since the opening weekend against Barcelona.
The La Liga leader is 4-1-0 in its home stadium and it has not conceded a single goal there in league play.
Athletic Bilbao is 1-4-0 on its travels and it has one of the worst scoring records of any road team in La Liga.