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The best and worst of the Matchday 9 Bundesliga schedule

The Bundesliga offers a full slate of matches this weekend as they head into matchday 9.

FC Bayern Muenchen v RB Salzburg: Group A - UEFA Champions League Photo by M. Donato/FC Bayern via Getty Images

After an exciting slate of games last week, Bayern Munich remains at the top of the table sitting just one point ahead of Borussia Dortmund and Bayer Leverkusen. There are plenty of intense match-ups to keep your post-Thanksgiving schedule full, so let’s take a look at some of the best and worst of Week 9 in Bundesliga action.

Best of Week 9

VfB Stuttgart v. Bayern Munich

Saturday, November 28, 9:30am EST
Mercedes-Benz Arena, Berlin
Watch on ESPN+

As Bayern look to extend their lead atop the league table, Stuttgart (8th place) will be looking to close the gap between them and 6th-place Wolfsburg, while eyeing ascension toward the top four. Unfortunately, they’ll have to do it without striker Nicolas Gonzalez who will be sidelined for multiple weeks after suffering a knee injury. Stuttgart will have to find another avenue to score some goals especially after last week’s 3-3 draw with TSG Hoffenheim. Stuttgart narrowly escaped defeat thanks to a stoppage time equalizer from Marc-Oliver Kempf in the dying moments of the match. Bayern, fresh off a 3-1 win over Red Bull Salzburg in Champions League action, have a quick turnaround and will look to the league’s leading scorer Robert Lewandowski to put this game away early. The star-studded squad, on paper, should have no trouble burying Stuttgart even on the road, but the home side are in desperate need of a win if they want to stay relevant in the top half of the table.

Worst of Week 9

FC Augsburg v. SC Freiburg

Saturday, November 28, 9:30am EST
WWK Arena, Augsburg
Watch on ESPN+

Two teams who are both on a downward slide will meet this weekend as FC Augsburg (10th place) plays host to SC Freiburg (14th place). Augsburg, who started the season off strong, have found themselves in a run of bad form as they’ve gone winless in 5 of their last 6 outings in league play, with their only win in that span coming on Halloween with a 3-1 win over bottom-of-the-barrel Mainz. Of those games, they’ve managed to draw 2 of them while losing 3, falling steadily down the ranks of the league table week after week. Freiburg, on the other hand, is in the middle of an 8-game winless streak, grinding out 3 draws and 5 losses in that stretch, including giving Mainz their first win of the season last week. Freiburg’s last win came on September 19th when they edged out Stuttgart 3-2. Augsburg will be without Raphael Framberger who picked up a red card in last week’s 1-1 draw with Monchengladbach. While both teams will be fighting for positioning in the table, these are two sides in extremely poor form, so don’t expect fireworks in this match.

Week 9 Sleeper

Mainz v. Hoffenheim

Sunday, November 29, 12:00pm EST
Opel Arena, Mainz
Watch on ESPN+

Mainz finally picked up their first win of the season thanks to a hat trick from Jean-Philippe Mateta in a big 3-1 win on the road over SC Freiburg. Newly minted manager Jan-Moritz Lichte’s side is officially out of the relegation zone — for now — and will look to build on that momentum from last week and carry it through as they welcome Andrej Kramaric and TSG Hoffenheim in hopes of climbing the table, with the potential of sitting at 13th place after this weekend’s action is said and done. Hoffenheim will be no easy feat, though. While they haven’t won in league play since their big 4-1 win over Bayern Munich near the end of September, they’ve been cleaning up in Europa League, winning all 4 of their first group stage games, outscoring their opponents 13-1 so far. They have the firepower to put this game to bed early, but with Mainz looking like a real team last week, this game could have the excitement and intensity any soccer fan would be looking for.

This Weekend’s Full Schedule

All times listed are Eastern. All matches streaming on ESPN+ in the United States.

Saturday, November 28

9:30am: Borussia Dortmund v. FC Koln
9:30am: RB Leipzig v. DSC Arminia Bielefeld
9:30am: FC Union Berlin v. Eintracht Frankfurt
9:30am: FC Augsburg v. SC Freiburg
9:30am: VfB Stuttgart v. Bayern Munich
12:30pm: Borussia Monchengladbach v. FC Schalke 04

Sunday, November 29

9:30am: Bayer Leverkusen v. Hertha Berlin
12:00pm: FSV Mainz 05 v. TSG Hoffenheim