Coming off the back of the first "Euro week", the season is starting to hot up. FC Bayern München remain the team to beat in Germany, and are two points clear of the pack already. Can they make it four wins out of four? Will Bayer Leverkusen and Schalke 04 finally get their seasons under way and pick up their first points?
I continue to do well on the weekly predictions, but there have been a number of surprising results already in the opening three rounds of matches. Who would have thought that both Leverkusen and Schalke would still be pointless?
VfB Stuttgart v Fortuna Düsseldorf (Fri.)
After getting off the mark in last week's thrilling local derby against Freiburg, Stuttgart will look to build on that at home against last year's 2. Bundesliga champions Fortuna Düsseldorf in this week's Friday evening encounter.
After their last-gasp win against highly-rated Hoffenheim, Friedhelm Funkel's Fortuna are on a high. The newly-promoted Rhinelanders have made a promising return to the top flight, and will fancy their chances against a porous Stuttgart defence.
Have Tayfun Korkut's side turned the corner? Are Düsseldorf on a roll? This is a really difficult one to call, and I cannot see beyond a tight and hard-fought draw.
Prediction: Stuttgart 1:1 Düsseldorf
TSG 1899 Hoffenheim v Borussia Dortmund (Sat.)
One of the big Saturday afternoon clashes sees last season's third and fourth place finishers go head to head at the Rhine-Neckar-Arena in Sinsheim.
Julian Nagelsmann's Hoffenheim have not got off to the best of starts, and will be looking to scour last week's defeat at Düsseldorf from their memory as they look to get their league campaign back on track. Dortmund meanwhile have started solidly and are still unbeaten, but have lacked consistency.
In midweek, both teams would have contrasting fortunes in the Champions League. While a bright and energetic Hoffe were unlucky to come away with a 2:2 draw against Shakhtar Donetsk, Dortmund huffed and puffed against a poor Club Brugge side before snatching a late 1:0 win.
Lucien Favre's side will fancy their chances, but Hoffenheim will surely be up for this. After their encouraging display against Shakhtar, Nagelsmann's men could just take this one. But it will be close.
Prediction: Hoffenheim 2:1 Dortmund
Hertha BSC v Borussia Mönchengladbach (Sat.)
The Olympiastadion in Berlin sees a clash between two unbeaten teams. Hertha BSC would lose their perfect record with a 2:2 draw in Wolfsburg, but have to be fancied on their home turf.
One could also make a good case for Gladbach, who have looked just as solid so far this term. Their 2:1 win against local rivals Schalke 04 was a lot more convincing than the scoreline suggests, and Dieter Hecking's side will definitely be gunning for all three points when they make the journey to the German capital.
This is another well-matched encounter, but Die Fohlen should have just about enough firepower to breach the well-drilled Berlin defence and get a result.
Prediction: Hertha 1:2 Gladbach
FC Augsburg v Werder Bremen (Sat.)
This is an another interesting and well-balanced match, with the coaches of both sides seething at dropping points last week.
FC Augsburg had victory in their grasp before conceding two late sucker punch goals in Mainz, while Bremen had numerous chances to kill off Nürnberg at the Weserstadion before they conceded an equaliser in added time.
Bremen are unbeaten, and will be looking to continue their good run of form under Florian Kohfeldt that stretches back to the second half of last season. Manuel Baum's Augsburg are playing at home, where they have created a reputation as a team that is hard to beat. It all points to another match that is extremely difficult to call.
Prediction: Augsburg 1:1 Bremen
VfL Wolfsburg v SC Freiburg (Sat.)
On current form, this should be a fairly easy match to predict. Wolfsburg have started well with seven points from a possible nine, while Freiburg only managed to get off the mark last week following their 3:3 draw with local rivals Stuttgart.
Bruno Labbadia's side have shown good form in front of goal, and look to have put the relegation woes of the last couple of seasons behind them. Freiburg meanwhile have always been feisty scrappers, and the welcome return of coach Christian Streich to the dugout will have surely boosted their confidence.
Freiburg have nothing to lose and are known for their positive approach, but the Wolves should have enough bite to take this one.
Prediction: Wolfsburg 2:0 Freiburg
1.FC Nürnberg v Hannover 96 (Sat.)
It has been a strange season for newly-promoted Nürnberg. They were unlucky to lose in Berlin and draw at home to Mainz, and lucky with their last-gasp equaliser in Bremen. Hannover, meanwhile, have been Hannover. Steady and solid but with the occasional spectacular moment.
Der Club will be buoyed by their spirited display against Bremen, and the team will be pressing hard for their first win in front of a home crowd. Hannover meanwhile will hope to pick themselves up after last week's 2:3 defeat in Leipzig, where they could consider themselves unlucky not to have taken at least a point.
This will be another close tussle which could go either way. The momentum may just about be with Michael Köllner's men, with home advantage being a crucial factor.
Prediction: Nürnberg 2:1 Hannover
FC Schalke 04 v FC Bayern München (Sat.)
This should be an easy one to call. Defending champions Bayern are in red-hot form right now, and Schalke are rock bottom of the league without a point to their name.
The form book suggests an easy win for the Bavarians, but this is just the sort of match that Schalke have thrived on in the past. More so now given that they will be massive underdogs, even in front of a passionate home crowd at the Veltins-Arena. Coach Domenico Tedesco is under growing pressure, a complete contrast from the serene progress of his Munich counterpart Niko Kovač.
Both teams were involved in Champions League action against Portuguese opposition. While Schalke were unlucky to draw 1:1 at home to Porto (conceding two penalties that should never have been given) Bayern were far more convincing as they breezed to a 2:0 win at Benfica.
Schalke will be determined, but this will not be enough. Bayern have the form, and they have the firepower. Bayern to win, and Schalke to end the weekend still pointless.
Prediction: Schalke 1:3 Bayern
Bayer 04 Leverkusen v 1. FSV Mainz (Sun.)
Like Schalke, Bayer Leverkusen have had a shocking start to the season. This is in contrast to underrated Mainz, who are sitting pretty with a healthy return of seven points from their opening three matches.
Mainz could consider themselves lucky to have beaten Augsburg last week, while Heiko Herrlich's men were well beaten in Munich despite taking an early lead. In midweek, Leverkusen finally produced something. After going two goals down to Bulgarian side Ludogorets Razgrad in their opening Europa League fixture, they swept their opponents away in the second half to win 3:2.
On paper, Leverkusen should be winning this hands down. On form, Mainz will fancy their chances. However, this one has all the signs of finishing even. While Sandro Schwarz's side will remain unbeaten, Leverkusen should finally get off the mark - leaving Schalke on their own at the bottom.
Prediction: Leverkusen 1:1 Mainz
Eintracht Frankfurt v RB Leipzig (Sun.)
Week four concludes on Sunday evening in Frankfurt, where last year's DFB-Pokal winners will be looking to release some of the pressure on coach Adi Hütter at the Commerzbank-Arena.
After beating Freiburg in their season opener, Frankfurt have lost their last two Bundesliga matches. But they then managed to beat a decent Marseille side in the Europa League with ten men. Leipzig meanwhile looked to have been building up nicely after their opening thrashing in Dortmund, only to fall to a disappointing 2:3 defeat in front of their own fans against sister side RB Salzburg.
Form is a funny thing. Ralf Rangnick's Roten Bullen have the bigger names and the fancier reputation, but I fancy die Adler to nick this one by the odd goal in three.
Prediction: Frankfurt 2:1 Leipzig
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