Bundesliga: Predicted Lineups and Team News for Matchday 4

Bundesliga: Predicted Lineups and Team News for Matchday 4

This article is part of our Predicted Lineups series.

The first international break is over and it's time to get back into Bundesliga action with two of the early title favorites playing Friday, as Bayern Munich take on Bayer Leverkusen. Elsewhere, Dortmund look to find some winning form against Freiburg, while Union Berlin could look to rotate against Wolfsburg before opening a Champions League campaign. 

Bundesliga projected lineups

Bayern Munich vs. Bayer Leverkusen

Friday, Sept. 15

Bayern Munich: Bayern return from the international break straight into what could be a title six-pointer. The break hasn't been kind to the Bavarians, as Joshua Kimmich and Dayot Upamecano both picked up knocks, though they are expected to return for Friday's clash. Jamal Musiala is fully fit and figures to take his spot back in the starting XI, likely pushing Serge Gnabry to the bench. Manuel Neuer isn't quite ready yet, so Sven Ulreich continues in the first team.

Projected XI: Sven Ulreich - Noussair Mazraoui, Dayot Upamecano, Min-Jae Kim, Alphonso Davies - Leon Goretzka, Joshua Kimmich - Kingsley Coman, Jamal Musiala, Leroy Sane - Harry Kane

Bayer Leverkusen: Leverkusen have a chance to firmly establish their title challenge against the reigning and defending champions in Bayern Munich. Nothing changes in the Leverkusen starting XI. Patrik Schick and Piero Hincapie remain out, meaning Leverkusen should roll out an unchanged first XI.

Projected XI: Lukas Hradecky - Jonathan Tah, Odilon Kossounou, Edmond Tapsoba - Jeremie Frimpong, Granit Xhaka, Exequiel Palacios, Alejandro Grimaldo - Florian Wirtz, Jonas Hofmann - Victor Boniface

FC Koln vs. TSG Hoffenheim

Saturday, Sept. 16

FC Koln: Koln have scored just twice coming into Matchday 4, but a lack of attacking options means that Davie Selke is more likely than not going to lead the line again. This isn't an inspiring lineup but it's one that will need to find form, as Jan Thielmann and Mark Uth remain on the sideline. Florian Kainz is a talented attacker and should be a prime bounce-back candidate after a slow start.

Projected XI: Marvin Schwabe - Benno Schmitz, Timo Hubers, Julian Chabot, Leart Paqarada - Dejan Ljubicic, Eric Martel - Luca Waldschmidt, Florian Kainz, Linton Maina - Davie Selke

TSG Hoffenheim: There are no changes to report for Hoffenheim on the injury front, though there is a possible change in the starting XI as the impressive Maximilian Beier could have done enough to earn a spot in the starting XI ahead of Ihlas Bebou. Pavel Kaderabek and Ozan Kabak should both be back from illness and are likely to take back roles in the XI, with Kevin Vogt the prime candidate to fall to the bench.

Projected XI: Oliver Baumann - Ozan Kabak, John Brooks, Attila Szalai - Pavel Kaderabek, Grischa Promel, Florian Grillitsch, Andrej Kramaric, Marius Bulter - Wout Weghorst, Maximilian Beier

Mainz 05 vs. VfB Stuttgart

Saturday, Sept. 16

Mainz 05: Mainz are off to a horror start and aren't likely to get captain Silvan Widmer back any time soon as he suffered another issue in training. This attack has been awful and the defensive unit hasn't shown the cohesion that was a staple in 2022/23. Stuttgart have had an impressive attack and will be looking to pad their goal difference if Mainz can't clean up their act behind the ball. 

Projected XI: Robin Zentner - Sepp van den Berg, Stefan Bell, Edimilson Fernandes - Anthony Caci, Leandro Barreiro, Dominik Kohr, Phillipp Mwene - Lee Jae-Sung, Karim Onisiwo - Ludovic Ajorque

VfB Stuttgart: Stuttgart are perhaps the surprise of the Bundesliga in the opening stages, with a shockingly proficient attack. This team lacks structure and will certainly fall on the wrong side of some blowouts, but they've already shown the ability to rout even the stoutest of teams, such as Freiburg. Nikolas Nartey remains out with a knee injury and Woo-yeong Jeong is returning from international duty, otherwise, Stuttgart have their first choice XI. 

Projected XI: Alexander Nubel, Pascal Stenzel, Waldemar Anton, Dan-Axel Zagadou, Hiroki Ito - Atakan Karazor, Angelo Stiller - Silas, Enzo Millot, Chris Fuhrich - Serhou Guirassy

VfL Wolfsburg vs. FC Union Berlin

Saturday, Sept. 16

VfL Wolfsburg: Wolfsburg have no new injury issues with the chance to take points against a Union side who could have their eyes set on a midweek Champions League match. The only question for the Wolfsburg starting XI is Patrick Wimmer or Tiago Tomas on the left wing in what has proven to be an effective attack. I'm going for Wimmer but it's truly a toss up. 

Projected XI: Koen Casteels - Joakim Maehle, Maxence Lacroix, Cedric Zesiger, Rogerio - Mattias Svanberg, Maximilian Arnold, Lovro Majer - Vaclav Cerny, Jonas Wind, Patrick Wimmer

FC Union Berlin: Union are entering a new era for the club as they approach their first Champions League campaign. It's possible there's rotation against Wolfsburg, but I expect a largely unchanged XI as they prioritize the Bundesliga. Kevin Volland is suspended and Rani Khedira (calf) isn't quite ready to return, which should bring Brenden Aaronson back into the starting XI.

Projected XI:  Frederik Ronnow - Danilho Doekhi, Diogo Leite, Robin Knoche - Josip Juranovic, Aissa Laidouni, Alex Kral, Brenden Aaronson, Robin Gosens - David Fofana, Kevin Behrens

SC Freiburg vs. Borussia Dortmund

Saturday, Sept. 16

SC Freiburg: The injury situation hasn't improved for Freiburg during the international break. Christian Gunter remains sidelined, which keeps Kiliann Sildillia in the starting XI and Daniel-Kofi Kyereh isn't anywhere near a return from an ACL injury. Little else changes for Freiburg as they look to put an embarrassing 5-0 defeat to Stuttgart in the rear-view mirror. 

Projected XI: Noah Atubolu - Kiliann Sildillia, Philipp Lienhart, Matthias Ginter, Lukas Kubler - Maximilian Eggestein, Nicolas Hofler - Ritsu Doan, Vincenzo Grifo, Roland Sallai - Lucas Holer

Borussia Dortmund: Dortmund have struggled for form and fitness, though the international break could give them a chance to get fit and find a consistent starting XI. Mateu Morey remains out, but Dortmund should otherwise finally be able to field their first-choice XI, including Karim Adeyemi and Julian Ryerson, who are both back to full availability. 

Projected XI: Gregor Kobel - Julian Ryerson, Niklas Sule, Nico Schlotterbeck, Ramy Bensebaini - Marcel Sabitzer, Emre Can, Julian Brandt - Donyell Malen, Sebastien Haller, Karim Adeyemi

RB Leipzig vs. FC Augsburg

Saturday, Sept. 16

RB Leipzig: Everything was going too well for RB Leipzig in the opening three matches and then the international break happened. Dani Olmo (knee) is sidelined for multiple matches and with his injury history, it's possible this could turn into a long-term issue. Willi Orban was also ruled out, meaning there will be wholesale changes to the Leipzig starting XI. Benjamin Sesko has been fantastic by all reports in training and could finally start up top. Emil Forsberg is the likely replacement for Olmo, though Timo Werner is another option. In central defense, it will be either Lukas Klostermann or Castello Lukeba who take over in the first team. 

Projected XI: Janis Blaswich - Benjamin Henrichs, Lukas Klostermann, Mohamed Simakan, David Raum - Xaver Schlager, Kevin Kampl - Xavi Simons, Emil Forsberg - Lois Openda, Benjamin Sesko

FC Augsburg: Augsburg remain without Reece Oxford and new signing Masaya Okugawa but are otherwise healthy. This is a tough match for anyone, but Augsburg will take some solace that they get to avoid the red-hot Olmo. Patric Pfeiffer has finished his suspension and should take an immediate place in the starting XI, with Maximilian Bauer most likely to fall to the bench. 

Projected XI:  Finn Dahmen - Arne Engels, Patric Pfeiffer, Felix Uduokhai, Mads Pedersen - Ruben Vargas, Elvis Rexhbecaj, Niklas Dorsch, Ermedin Demirovic, Dion Beljo, Sven Michel

VfL Bochum vs. Eintracht Frankfurt

Saturday, Sept. 16

VfL Bochum: Bochum aren't going to trick anyone into believing they are a good team, but they are feisty and healthy, and that was enough to frustrate Dortmund. This team now gets an early chance at a Frankfurt side that was de-clawed at the transfer deadline. There's not likely to be any change in the XI, though none of the Bochum options are particularly inspiring going forward.

Projected XI: Manuel Riemann - Erhan Masovic, Ivan Ordets, Bernardo - Felix Passlack, Matus Bero, Anthony Losilla, Kevin Stoger, Maximilian Wittek - Philipp Hofmann, Takuma Asano

Eintracht Frankfurt: A new era in Eintracht Frankfurt begins without Jesper Lindstrom and Randal Kolo Muani. There's no way to sugarcoat how massive those losses are, as they may fall from European hopefuls to a side scrapping for a top-half finish. There's little to report on the injury front, with the biggest issue being a lack of talent in the attack. New signing Fares Chaibi is a good addition, but he isn't likely to replace the production of Lindstrom.

Projected XI: Kevin Trapp - Tuta, Robin Koch, Willian Pacho - Eric Junior, Sebastian Rode, Ellyes Skhiri, Niels Nkounkou - Mario Gotze, Fares Chaibi - Omar Marmoush

FC Heidenheim vs. SV Werder Bremen

Sunday, Sept. 17

FC Heidenheim: Heidenheim have looked impressive early, but those impressive performances are yet to show up the points column. There will be hope that Bremen are beatable, especially with Marvin Ducksch not fully fit. Marnon Busch remains sidelined for Heidenheim, giving another start to Omar Traore. Denis Thomalla and Marvin Pieringer have been rotated in the attack, though neither has impressed early. I'll be sticking with Pieringer to come back into the starting XI. 

Projected XI: Kevin Muller - Omar Traore, Patrick Mainka, Tim Siersleben, Jonas Fohrenbach - Lennard Maloney - Eren Dinkci, Adrian Beck, Jan-Niklas Beste - Marvin Pieringer, Tim Kleindienst

SV Werder Bremen: Werder Bremen took a win before the international break and will hope to build on that against newly-promoted Heidenheim. Marvin Ducksch is a doubt for Sunday's clash and is certainly one to keep an eye on as he struggles with a thigh injury, especially with Niclas Fullkrug gone. Naby Keita is nearing a return, though he isn't likely to get the start Sunday. He could eventually be a long-term replacement for Christian Gross or Romano Schmid.

Projected XI: Jiri Pavlenka - Amos Pieper, Niklas Stark, Marco Friedl - Mitchell Weiser, Romano Schmid, Christian Gross, Jens Stage, Anthony Jung - Dawid Kownacki, Marvin Ducksch

SV Darmstadt vs. Borussia Monchengladbach

Sunday, Sept. 17

SV Darmstadt: Darmstadt have conceded 10 and scored two, which isn't great. Gladbach might not be in good form but this seems like yet another uphill battle for Darmstadt, who are looking for any sign of life to try and avoid slipping back into the 2. Bundesliga. The injury side of things isn't good for the newly-promoted side, either. Mathias Honsak is struggling with a hamstring issue, while Fabian Nurnberger has yet to train following a concussion. Nurnberger is expected to get back on the pitch Sunday but Oscar Vilhelmsson is likely to take the start over Honsak once more.

Projected XI: Marcel Schuhen - Christoph Klarer, Christoph Zimmermann, Matej Maglica - Matthias Bader, Marvin Mehlem, Bartol Franjic, Fabian Holland, Fabian Nurnberger - Luca Pfeiffer, Oscar Vilhelmsson

Borussia Monchengladbach: Gladbach certainly didn't expect to sit on just a single point heading into the fourth matchday, and perhaps the one positive has been a large avoidance of early injuries. Manu Kone is expected to return soon, though not quite for Sunday's clash. Luca Netz is fit once more and is likely to get the start ahead of Joe Scally, who hasn't impressed when in the starting XI, and has been on international duty. A newly promoted Darmstadt side is as close to a must-win game as you can have on matchday four.

Projected XI: Moritz Nicolas - Marvin Friedrich, Ko Itakura, Maximilian Wober - Franck Honorat, Julian Weigl, Florian Neuhaus, Luca Netz - Nathan Ngoumou, Alassane Plea - Tomas Cvancara

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ian Faletti
Ian Faletti has been a fan of almost all esports (and sports) his entire life. He has been writing about esports since 2012, with his work appearing on RotoWire, ESPN and other entities. Ian cheers for Fnatic, the Nationals, and the Capitals.
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