Borussia Dortmund's Paco Alcacer (l.) and Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski (r.) will both be hoping to fire their sides to the Bundesliga title this season. - © DEUTSCHE FUSSBALL LIGA
Borussia Dortmund's Paco Alcacer (l.) and Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski (r.) will both be hoping to fire their sides to the Bundesliga title this season. - © DEUTSCHE FUSSBALL LIGA
bundesliga

Bundesliga title race run-in: Who do Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund have to play?

Who will hold their nerve in the title race? And which teams could put a spanner in the works for Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund? With five games to go, bundesliga.com assesses the top two’s final fixtures.

Bayern were nine points adrift of Dortmund after Matchday 15, but have their destiny in their own hands after winning Der Klassiker 5-0 on Matchday 28.

Robert Lewandowski scored two of Bayern's five goals against Dortmund on Matchday 28. - imago images / Jan Huebner

Matchday 30

Saturday 20/ Sunday 21 April

Dortmund: Freiburg (a)
Last season: 0-0 draw
This season: Dortmund won 2-1 at home on MD13

Bayern: Werder Bremen (h)
Last season: 4-2 win for Bayern
This season: Bayern won 2-1 away on MD13

Freiburg tend to make life difficult for most visitors to the Schwarzwald-Stadion, and Dortmund were held scoreless last season despite playing against 10 men for over an hour. The five-time Bundesliga champions had won on their previous six visits to the ground, however, so they should travel wary but confident.

Dortmund won’t hold out too much hope of Bayern faltering this weekend. After all, the champions have won 18 games in a row – including 16 in the league – against Werder Bremen. All good things come to an end, however, and – having shipped some heavy defeats in Munich in recent years – Bremen would love to put a dent in Bayern’s title hopes.

Serge Gnabry (l.) scored twice against his former team to give Bayern victory in Bremen. - imago/Team 2

Matchday 31

Saturday 27/ Sunday 28 April

Dortmund: Schalke (h)
Last season: 4-4 draw
This season: Dortmund won 2-1 away on MD14

Bayern: Nuremberg (a)
Last season: N/A
This season: Bayern won 3-0 away on MD14

Dortmund could argue that winning a league title is even tougher for them, since they have to negotiate two particularly heated derby fixtures each season. Just over 20 miles (35 kilometres) separate Dortmund and Gelsenkirchen, and Schalke supporters would hate to see their local rivals become German champions. No one will ever forget last season’s Revierderby fixture in Dortmund, when the visitors came back from 4-0 down to salvage a point. BVB will be determined not to allow their neighbours to spoil the party again.

Bayern have a Bavarian derby to contend with, but one they would expect to handle. Bottom club Nuremberg held Dortmund to a scoreless draw in February, however, and Eintracht Frankfurt, Bayer Leverkusen and Werder Bremen have also left there with just one point. On their last stay in the top flight – between 2009 and 2014 – Nuremberg drew three times in five matches against Bayern.

Watch: Highlights of Dortmund's win over Schalke earlier this season

Matchday 32

Saturday 4 May

Dortmund: Werder Bremen (a)
Last season: 1-1 draw
This season: Dortmund won 2-1 at home on MD15

Bayern: Hannover (h)
Last season: 3-1 win for Bayern
This season: Bayern won 4-0 away on MD15

In recent years, Dortmund’s matches in Bremen have been tight affairs, and this one is likely to be no different. Thomas Delaney has switched sides since getting an equaliser for the Green-Whites in last season’s meeting in Bremen, but the home team will not be too fearful. They lost narrowly in Dortmund in December, before returning there in February to progress to the DFB Cup quarter-finals on penalties following a 3-3 draw.

Before this season, Bayern had won their 12 previous matches against Hannover – often by a big margin. That run continued with a comfortable away win in December, and it would be a real surprise if Bayern drop points against a team that has struggled on their travels this season.

Bayern’s Joshua Kimmich (c.) enjoyed his goal against Hannover in December. - imago/Team 2

Matchday 33

Saturday 11 May

Dortmund: Fortuna Düsseldorf (h)
Last season: N/A
This season: Düssseldorf won 2-1 at home on MD16

Bayern: RB Leipzig (a)
Last season: 2-1 win for Leipzig
This season: Bayern won 1-0 at home MD16

Revenge will be on Dortmund minds when Düsseldorf come to town on the penultimate day of the season. BVB will also hope that the visitors will be thinking about summer holiday plans after successfully securing another year of top-flight football.

There have been some dramatic matches in Leipzig since RB got to the top tier in 2016. Bayern came from 4-2 down – thanks to two goals in injury-time – to win a madcap encounter 5-4 in May 2017, before following up with a penalty shootout win in the DFB Cup that October. Leipzig – who could well be fighting for third place by the time this game comes around - came from behind to win in the league last season.

Franck Ribery (3rd.l) scored the only goal of the game when Bayern Munich faced RB Leipzig earlier this season. - 2018 Getty Images

Matchday 34

Saturday 18 May

Dortmund: Borussia Mönchengladbach (a)
Last season: 1-0 Dortmund win
This season: Dortmund won 2-1 at home on MD17

Bayern: Eintracht Frankfurt (h)
Last season: 4-1 Bayern win
This season: Bayern won 3-0 away on MD17

If Dortmund are to win the title, they sure have to do it the hard way. Gladbach don’t tend to lose many games at home, and on the final day of the season they will more than likely still be in with a shout of getting a European place. Dortmund have won on their last three trips though – with former Foal Marco Reus getting the only goal last season – so there is cause for optimism for Favre when he returns to another of his former clubs.

Could it all finish how it started for the champions? In August Niko Kovac returned to his previous employers – the team he helped guide past Bayern in the 2017/18 DFB Cup final – to watch Bayern win 5-0 against the Eagles in the DFL Supercup that kicked off the season. Will Kovac – after a rocky period pre-Christmas – return to Frankfurt to celebrate another title triumph with Bayern? The high-flying home side could still have plenty to play for by then, however, and will be keen to get a first league win over the visitors since March 2010.