The Bundesliga season gets underway on Friday as Bayern Munich and Werder Bremen kick things off at 2:30 p.m. ET. Bayern, who won the title last year on a goal differential tiebreaker with Borussia Dortmund, will look to defend their crown and win their 12th consecutive German championship.
Ahead of the opening matchday, we’re taking a look at title favorites and contenders, with odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.
The favorite: Bayern Munich (-450)
In their first season without Robert Lewandowski, many thought Bayern wouldn’t be able to pull off another championship, but Serge Gnabry and Jamal Musiala helped lead the German giants to their 11th straight win. While they lost some key players in Yann Sommer, Marcel Sabitzer, Sadio Mane, and Lucas Hernandez during the offseason, they also picked up prolific Tottenham striker Harry Kane and Napoli center back Kim Min-jae, who will help Thomas Tuchel’s side on both ends of the pitch.
Other contenders: Borussia Dortmund (+600), RB Leipzig (+1200), Bayer Leverkusen (+4000)
Dortmund and Leipzig have been consistent contenders for years, although the last time a non-Munich team won the title was Dortmund in 2011-12. Both teams consistently finish in the top three or four each season, but haven’t been able to topple Bayern Munich in over a decade. After losing Jude Bellingham to Real Madrid, Dortmund brought in Marcel Sabitzer in hopes of filling the void as they look to challenge the top of the table this season.
Leipzig lost last season’s top scorer Christopher Nkunku, who went to Chelsea, while Dominik Szoboszlai made the move to Liverpool and Josko Gvardiol left for Manchester City. As for Leverkusen, they lost a key player in Moussa Diaby, who went to Aston Villa, though they were able to bring in the likes of Granit Xhaka and Victor Boniface.
Longshot value bet: Union Berlin (+10000)
Berlin have seen steady improvement throughout the last four years since earning promotion to the Bundesliga in 2019. Their first season saw them finish in 11th place, but in 2022-23 they finally cracked the top four and will make their first-ever UEFA Champions League appearance this season. Led by Sheraldo Becker, who tallied 11 goals and seven assists last year, they’ll rely on him again in the attack as they brought in plenty of new defenders to shore up their backline. They may be a longshot to win the championship, but don’t sleep on Berlin as they look to continue their upward trend.
Best bet: Bayern Munich (-450)
Even with last season’s big Sadio Mane signing not working out as the ex-Liverpool winger only scored seven goals, Bayern were able to secure another title. The addition of Kane, who scored 30 goals in the Premier League last season, will surely only make them that much more dangerous up top as they’re once again the favorites to take home a championship.