Bundesliga Matchday 20: Table-toppers Bayern set for Bochum battle
Bundesliga leaders Bayern Munich got back to winning ways last time out and will look to carry on in that vein against lowly Bochum.
Borussia Dortmund, meanwhile, are in fine form and could capitalise on any slip-ups from the Bavarian giants by beating Werder Bremen on the road.
Elsewhere, a tantalising clash between second-placed Union Berlin and fourth-placed RB Leipzig takes place on Saturday evening.
Fellow European hopefuls Eintracht Frankfurt and Freiburg are also in action, taking on FC Cologne and Stuttgart, respectively.
Game of the weekend: Bayern Munich vs Bochum (Saturday, 2.30pm)
After three consecutive league draws, Bayern will have been relieved to notch up a win by beating Wolfsburg 4-2 last Sunday.
Their next opponents are Bochum, who — on paper — appear unlikely to rock the boat.
FCB have only lost one of their 35 home Bundesliga encounters with the Blues (26 wins, eight draws) and won two of the last three meetings 7-0, representing Bochum's two heaviest defeats in the competition.
Furthermore, Julian Nagelsmann's outfit have the division's best record for goals scored (56), goals conceded (18) and expected goals (40.2).
Meanwhile, Thomas Letsch's side have the worst defence (46 goals conceded) and the highest expected goals against (37.1).
Werder Bremen vs Borussia Dortmund (Saturday, 2.30pm)
After an inconsistent start to the season, Dortmund have gone on a four-game winning streak to move within three points of league leaders Bayern.
However, a trip to Bremen could spell trouble for Edin Terzic's men.
The reverse fixture earlier this season saw Ole Werner's unit become the first team in Bundesliga history to score three goals from the 89th minute onwards, coming back from 2-0 down to win 3-2.
Additionally, the hosts have won more Bundesliga home games against BVB than any other side (31), although only one of the last 10 such meetings has ended in victory for Die Werderaner (two draws, seven defeats).
Dortmund certainly have the tools to exploit Werder's frailties. Bremen have conceded more goals from vertical attacks than any other side in the German top flight this season (eight), while Die Borussen rank joint-second in the division for shots or touches in the box following such attacks (40).
RB Leipzig vs Union Berlin (Saturday, 5.30pm)
Just two places and three points separate fourth-placed Leipzig from Union in second and both sides come into this clash in strong form.
The hosts are unbeaten since September 17, a run stretching to 18 matches across all competitions (14 wins, four draws).
Union, meanwhile, have won their last four league outings in a row, taking their total victories for the season to 12 — the joint-most in the division and their highest-ever tally at this stage of the competition.
These two teams also rank joint-second in the Bundesliga for set-piece goals (13) and goals scored in the final 15 minutes (11).
FC Cologne vs Eintracht Frankfurt (Sunday, 4.30pm)
Frankfurt come into Matchday 20 just one place and one point outside of the top four — but Cologne are unlikely to prove welcoming hosts.
The Billy Goats have lost just one of their last 15 Bundesliga home encounters with Die Adler (nine wins, five draws), earning more home points against them than any other team since the turn of the century (26).
However, Frankfurt are unbeaten in their last nine matches in all competitions (six wins, three draws) and have not lost any of their last seven road trips (four wins, three draws).
Additionally, Oliver Glasner's side have scored the second-most goals of any Bundesliga team (40), with Randal Kolo Muani's division-leading total of 19 goal contributions (nine goals, 10 assists) meaning he has played a direct role in almost half his side's league strikes.
Freiburg vs Stuttgart (Saturday, 2.30pm)
Freiburg were thrashed 5-1 by Dortmund on Matchday 19 and will be keen to shake off that result with a win over struggling Stuttgart.
They will have to do so without Kiliann Sildillia, who was sent off against BVB — ending the club's record streak (since 1991) of 109 league games without a red card — as well as head coach Christian Streich, who also saw red.
Recent history is on their side, though, with the Breisgau Brazilians triumphing in each of their last five league meetings with Saturday's opponents.
Furthermore, Streich's men have not lost at home since August 12, a run of 12 matches in all competitions, while their upcoming opponents are winless in their last 19 Bundesliga away games (nine draws, 10 defeats).
Additionally, Bruno Labbadia's men have kept the fewest clean sheets of any side in the Bundesliga this term (one), failing to do so for 15 games in a row.
The weekend's other games
Schalke vs Wolfsburg (Friday, 7.30pm)
Mainz vs Augsburg (Saturday, 2.30pm)
Hoffenheim vs Bayer Leverkusen (Saturday, 2.30pm)
Hertha Berlin vs Borussia Monchengladbach (Sunday, 2.30pm)