Bundesliga Picks for Week 19's Bayern Munich vs. FC Schalke 04: Betting Odds, Preview & Prediction

Kevin Stott

Monday, February 2, 2015 12:50 PM GMT

This handicapper answers the important question that soccer bettors are wondering: is heavy chalk Bayern worth a pick here after a 4-1 road loss in Fußball-Bundesliga vs. VfL Wolfsbur.

Odds Overview
Bayern Munich vs. FC Schalke 04, Tuesday 19:00 (GOL TV USA (USA), BT Sport 2 (UK); 2:00 p.m. ET/11 a.m. PT): Fußball-Bundesliga leaders and defending champions Bayern Munich (14-3-1, 42 GF-8 GA, 45 points) welcome fifth-place FC Schalke (9-3-6, 29 GF 21 GA, 30 points) to Allianz Arena in Munich on Tuesday for this Week 19 match in which the Bavarians will be looking to rebound in after losing their first game of the season and being humbled by second-place VfL Wolfsburg (11-4-3, 37 GF-18 GA) at Volkswagen Arena on Friday.

Oddsmakers have hosts Bayern Munich expected heavy favorites (-550, bet365) here, with Schalke massive +1100 underdogs and the Draw priced at a healthy +650 (bet365) in the Three-Way (Winner) marketplace. The Total Goals is in this match is a lofty 3½ Over/Under -110 (bet365) while the popular Both Teams To Score odds here priced at -105 for the Yes and at -125 for the No (William Hill). Expect Bayern to try to clamp down defensively after allowing as many goals in one game against Die Wölfe (4) as they had in the entire first half of the season. A random prop in this one: Halftime Score,  sees a 2-0 Bayern Munich lead at the end of the first half priced at +425 (BetVictor).

 

FC Schalke 04
FC Schalke (3-0-5 Road, 12 GF-12 GA) and coach Roberto Di Matteo have done a magnificent job so far this season and find themselves in 5th place and in contention for a UEFA Champions League spot while sitting in the Europa League qualifying zone (5th and 6th place) in Germany’s top flight of soccer. Die Königsblauen (The Royal Blues) have a dynamic scoring duo in strikers Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting (9 goals, +240 Anytime Goalscorer, bet365) and Dutch veteran Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (7 goals). Choupo-Moting, a 25-year Cameroonian international, just returned from the AFCON tournament and was in Schalke’s starting lineup on Saturday in Die Königsblauen’s 1-0 home win over Hannover 96 on Marco Höger’s (+2000) goal. But that victory may prove costly for Schalke as Huntelaar earned a Red Card and will miss this crucial match at Bayern after taking down Hanover’s Manuel Schmiedebach with just 5 minutes left. "The red card against Klaas-Jan Huntelaar has hurt us," Di Matteo said to reporters after the game.

Besides Choupo-Moting and Huntelaar, Schalke has four players all sitting on 2 goals: Julian Draxler (+400)—who has been out of action with an injury to a tendon in his right thigh—Swiss midfielder Tranquillo Barnetta (+1000), 19-year-old attacking midfielder Max Meyer (+700) and defensive midfielder Roman Neustädter (+1600). Here against Bayern in Munich, Di Matteo will certainly look to put forth a loaded starting XI with Choupo-Moting featuring, but the loss of Huntelaar now means the Bayern defense can concentrate on trying to bottle up the electric Cameroonian. To have any chance to actually win this game, Schalke goalkeeper Ralf Fährmann will have to be absolutely brilliant as you know the Bavarians will be in a foul mood after being embarrassed Friday at the Volkswagen Arena. Beep beep.

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FC Bayern Munich
Bayern Munich (9-0-0 Home, 27 GF-2 GA) is kind of good here at home at the Allianz Arena in Munich. No losses. Two goals allowed. In February. And it will be glad it’s playing at home after being pelted by Wolfsburg, 4-1, on Friday as Bas Dost and Kevin De Bruyne both scored twice in the huge upset—Wolfsburg were +600 underdogs at the Westgate Las Vegas Super Book—in Bayern’s first game after the league’s 6-week long Winter Break. Juan Bernat (+350 Anytime Goalscorer) did notch his first goal for Bayern Munich, but Die Wölfe looked strong throughout and jumped on the defending champs from the opening whistle. And although it probably wouldn’t have mattered if Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer even had a good game against Wolfsburg, but he looked incredibly human in Friday’s loss.

Against Schalke, the hosts Bayern will have to try to quickly snap out of any mental funk and one problem that was apparent against Schalke was the lack of a real field general to lead the attack. Bayern looked lost for much of the match and had trouble keeping possession and threatening deep in the Wolfsburg zone. Bayern manager Pep Guardiola will look for striker Robert Lewandowski (7 goals, -175) to get his club on the scoreboard early, and, as you can see by the lofty price (-175) on the 26-year-old in the Anytime Goalscorer marketplace, the oddsmakers are certainly expecting the Polish international to score here on Tuesday. Club legend Thomas Müller (7 goals, -125), veteran Arjen Robben (10 goals, -120), Mario Götze (7 goals, -105) and striker Claudio Pizarro (-105) give Bayern and Guardiola a strong enough scoring attack, but it can be sporadic, although with one of the best defenses in Europe, Bayern often doesn’t need that much scoring. Glue guys like Bastian Schweinsteiger (+220), David Alaba (+240), Xabi Alonso (+350), Philipp Lahm (2 goals), the aforementioned Bernat (+350) and Gianluca Gaudino (+220) often come through for this team and that’s why this club is a real threat to win its second Champions League title in the last three years this spring.

Check out another pick for Bundesliga: Borussia Dortmund vs. FC Augsburg

Best Betting Approaches and Trends
When these two played in Week 2 at the Veltins-Arena in Gelsenkirchen, the game ended in a 1-1 draw while in this fixture at the Allianz Arena last season (Week 23), Bayern Munich rolled FC Schalke, 5-1. In the lifetime series in Fußball-Bundesliga play, Bayern is 45-26-18 (186 GF-99 GA) against Schalke overall and an impressive 31-7-6 (116 GF-37 GA) here against them in München. In the last 4 meetings between these two in league play here at Allianz, Bayern is 4-0 and has outscored Die Königsblauen, 15-2 along the way (5-1, 4-0, 2-0, 4-1). With 2 goals in its L4 trips to Munich and Bayern Munich coming off its first league loss since the airplane was invented, Schalke’s simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.

If looking at a side for your Soccer Pick, this game might best be approached employing the Asian Handicap, with Bayern listed at -1.5 -200 and -2 -125 (bet365) among other various lines in that often overlooked market. Expect the hosts to take out their frustrations on Schalke, and to try to establish some offensive flow and control the Time of Possession from the start here. With dynamic attacking midfielder Franck Ribéry (right thigh) injured, Bayern will need someone like Götze or Robben to help create on the attack and expect the hosts to get 3 goals in this situation with Schalke probably finding a way to get one past a possibly still rattled Neuer through Choupo-Moting or Jefferson Farfán (+450). Seldom do bettors get a chance to back Bayern Munich in Bundesliga play coming off a loss and that’s the case we have here and with these two teams tying in the first meeting at this one at the Veltins-Arena (1-1), it’s just bad timing for Schalke in Bavaria on Tuesday. Wir sehen uns, Klaas-Jan. Your hyphenated first name is worth a Red Card in itself, brother. Embrace logic.

Prediction: Bayern Munich 3 FC Schalke 1

Bundesliga Picks: Bayern Munich -1.5 -200, Over 3½ -110 (bet365)

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