Five things to look for in the Bundesliga

Ryland JAMES
Bayern Munich have netted 28 goals in their last six games and are on course for the treble of European, Bundesliga and German Cup titles

High-scoring Bayern Munich turn their sights on Moenchengladbach, Borussia Dortmund are without suspended Ousmane Dembele and spluttering RB Leipzig are at relegation-threatened Werder Bremen.

Here are five things to look out for in the Bundesliga this weekend:

Big names, big records

On Sunday hosts Borussia Moenchengladbach will be the next team bidding to hinder Bayern Munich's march to a fifth straight league title.

With 15 Bundesliga points since January, Gladbach have the second-highest tally so far in 2017, just behind Bayern, who have 17.

Bayern's top names were critical of their first-half performance in last Saturday's 3-0 win over Eintracht Frankfurt, even though they led 2-0 at the break, underlining the high standards expected.

"It was a weak performance," was how Mats Hummels appraised the first 45 minutes.

But Bayern have netted 28 goals in their last six games and are on course for the treble of European, Bundesliga and German Cup titles.

Coach Carlo Ancelotti has Germany international defender Jerome Boateng back from a shoulder injury, which could push Javi Martinez up from the back four into midfield.

Eberl's Bayern quandary

The pre-match focus at Borussia Park will be on Gladbach's director of sport Max Eberl, who has been told by Borussia's bosses that he has until Sunday to commit to the club or confirm rumours he plans to join Bayern.

Bayern have been looking for a new director of sport since Matthias Sammer quit last season on health grounds.

The 42-year-old Eberl has a Gladbach contract until 2020, but is a prime candidate after Philipp Lahm announced last month he turned down Bayern's vacant sports director job.

Dortmund without Dembele

Marco Reus is sidelined by a hamstring injury while a fifth yellow card means playmaker Ousmane Dembele is suspended for third-placed Borussia Dortmund's home match against Ingolstadt on Friday.

Even missing two stars, Dortmund coach Thomas Tuchel has midfield options behind Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, the league's top scorer with 22.

Teenage US international Christian Pulisic and Germany winger Andre Schuerrle, who both netted in Tuesday's German Cup quarter-final win, are set to keep their starting places.

Alexander Isak, the 17-year-old Swedish wunderkind dubbed the "new Zlatan Ibrahimovic", made his first-team debut in the 3-0 win at Lotte, but Tuchel says he is not ready for his Bundesliga debut.

"We all need some patience, most of all him," said Tuchel.

RB Leipzig in rut

Leipzig started their first Bundesliga season by going on a record 13-game unbeaten run and remain second in the table only to Bayern Munich, but have taken just seven points from their last six games.

"In the mean time teams have figured out how to stop us," said coach Ralph Hasenhuettl.

"We're suffering from the curse of meeting teams who are now giving their all when they play us."

With three wins from their last four matches, hosts Bremen have Germany winger Serge Gnabry back from a knee injury, but striker Max Kruse is doubtful with a leg injury.

Leipzig are missing Naby Keita, who is suspended and recovering after collapsing in the dressing room with poor circulation after last Saturday's shock defeat at home to Wolfsburg.

Kalou question mark

Salomon Kalou is struggling to be fit for Saturday's match at Cologne as Hertha Berlin look to build on their 2-1 win over Borussia Dortmund.

The ex-Chelsea striker has a thigh injury, but boosted Berlin on Wednesday by signing a contract extension, reportedly until 2019 with the option of another year.

Kalou has forged a potent partnership alongside top-scorer Vedad Ibisevic, who has also extended until 2019, while Cologne's Anthony Modeste has hit 19 goals.

With just two wins from 12 away games this season, Hertha have a dreadful record on the road and coach Pal Dardai says tactical changes are likely to stop the rot.

Fixtures (all times 1330 GMT unless stated)


Borussia Dortmund v Ingolstadt (1930)


Wolfsburg v Darmstadt, Cologne v Hertha Berlin, Augsburg v Freiburg, Werder Bremen v RB Leipzig, Hoffenheim v Bayer Leverkusen, E. Frankfurt v Hamburg (1730)


Mainz v Schalke, Borussia Moenchengladbach v Bayern Munich (1630)