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Saturday, 15 December, 2018

Borussia Dortmund can maintain their brilliant start

Aubameyang in frightening form

Dortmund's Pierre Emerick Aubameyang
1 of 1

Bundesliga & Sky Bet Football League
From 2.30pm Saturday

Augsburg v Borussia Dortmund
It has been the best start to a Bundesliga campaign in Borussia Dortmund's history and they can improve on that record with a convincing win at Augsburg.

Never before have Dortmund collected 16 points with a goal difference of plus 18 after six matches and they are swarming all over their opponents, with Freiburg the only German side to escape defeat this season.

New boss Peter Bosz is instructing the side to attack in huge numbers which is enabling them to dominate weaker opponents, such as Augsburg, even if it is sporting suicide in the Champions League.

Tottenham and Real Madrid have counter-attacked BVB in Europe, yet domestically Dortmund have beaten Wolfsburg and Hamburg (3-0) on their travels, while at home it finished 2-0 against Hertha, 5-0 against Cologne and 6-1 against Monchengladbach.

The gubbing of Gladbach was frightening to watch.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored a hat-trick and also hit the woodwork on three occasions, while wide player Max Phillip scored twice and Julian Weigl's first start this season on his return from injury was rewarded with a goal.

The flat performance against ten men at Freiburg earlier this month, perhaps influenced by Bosz having to make two first-half substitutions, seems to be the exception rather than the rule and if Dortmund get in front they could run amok.

Dortmund have never lost at Augsburg and in their six Bundesliga visits the hosts have led for a total of just 33 minutes.

The Bavarians have made a rip-roaring beginning themselves and started this round of matches in fifth but this will be by far Augsburg's toughest test.

They did beat Leipzig 1-0 but Naby Keita was missing for the Red Bull-backed visitors, while other key midfielder Emil Forsberg was only fit enough for the bench which may help to explain their limp show.

Expect much more from Dortmund, who should be safe in accumulators and can also cover the one-goal Asian handicap where stakes are returned if the favourites win by one goal.

Dortmund -1 on Asian handicap
1pt 13-16 188Bet

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Shrewsbury v Scunthorpe
All good things must come to an end and the last remaining unbeaten record in the Sky Bet Football League could be over when Scunthorpe visit League One table-toppers Shrewsbury.

Town's run from relegation candidates last season to leaders has been remarkable and is great credit to manager Paul Hurst's hard work but most of their wins have been by tight margins which, usually, over the course of the campaign will start to go the other way.

All nine of Shrewsbury's victories in all competitions this season have been by one goal and they have not been triumphant by more in their last 33 league matches.

Saturday football columns

Kevin Pullein

Dan Childs


After a 1-0 defeat at the New Meadow, Southend boss Phil Brown complained: "Shrewsbury are riding their luck and we're not, that's the only difference."

Scunthorpe have lost only once themselves in League One - a really unfortunate 1-0 reverse to Blackburn - and that goal is the only one conceded in their last eight league matches.

The Iron, who have conceded just three league goals all season, look more capable of launching a sustained promotion push having reached the playoffs last season and are well worth backing as outsiders in the draw-no-bet market.

Scunthorpe draw no bet
1pt Evs Betfred, BoyleSports

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Hull v Birmingham
Steve Cotterill was appointed as Birmingham's new manager on Friday and he can watch his new side pick up a positive result at Hull in a game where both sides are missing important players.

Stephen Kingsley has joined Kevin Stewart, Evandro, Abel Hernandez, Ryan Mason, Brian Lenihan, Moses Odubajo and Will Keane on the Hull sidelines, while Blues are without Jota, Che Adams, David Stockdale and Carl Jenkinson.

However, having won only twice this season Hull are easy to oppose at odds-on, particularly as Blues have picked up four points in their last two matches against Derby and Sheffield Wednesday since Harry Redknapp left the club.

Those two Hull triumphs came against Burton and Bolton, who are possibly the two worst teams in the division, and for all Birmingham's issues they have a deep squad with decent talent following their late-summer spending spree.

Birmingham or draw double chance
1pt 5-6 general

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Plays of the day

Dortmund 1-2 
It has been a mighty impressive Bundesliga start for BVB, who have scored 19 goals in their six league matches and conceded just one - which was a consolation in a 6-1 victory.

Sociedad 10-11
There have to be better odds-on shots than a Sociedad side who face a quick turnaround from Thursday's defeat at Zenit. Betis have won four of their six games, including a 1-0 success at Real Madrid. 

Dortmund 1-2, Inter 2-7, Liverpool 7-10 Hills 

Both teams to score
Games at Fleetwood 13-18, Swindon 11-14, Yeovil 13-19 188Bet  

Thought for the week

Fiorentina's Marco Sportiello saved a penalty from Atalanta's Papu Gomez on Sunday which is not remarkable apart from the fact the goalkeeper is on loan in Florence and denied a goal to his parent club.

That would not be allowed to happen in the Premier League as players can't appear against their parent clubs and we saw Chelsea take advantage of that last week as Alvaro Morata scored a hat-trick against a Stoke side missing Blues centre-back Kurt Zouma.

It will be see the same for Tammy Abraham when Chelsea face Swansea and Ruben Loftus-Cheek in a couple of weeks when the champions head to Crystal Palace.

That should not be allowed to happen.

Either you can't loan players between Premier League clubs or you can and they can play, otherwise it's not fair that Abraham, Zouma or Loftus-Cheek can take points off Chelsea's title rivals but not the Blues.

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New boss Peter Bosz is instructing his side to attack in numbers which is enabling them to dominate weaker opponents
E.W. Terms
Sky bet