SPORTS: Weekend European Football Previews.

Another weekend is here. That means another barrage of football matches are here. It can be challenge prioritizing which matches to watch. Here are our suggestions.

Bayer Leverkusen vs Mainz 

Both Bayer and Mainz have an identical record so far in the season with three wins, one draw and one loss. 

The host is very efficient as they have scored 15 goals in the previous five games in the Bundesliga. On the other hand, Mainz has an excellent defense, so they haven’t conceded a goal for almost 300 minutes, in the last three rounds, against Freiburg, Hoffenheim and Greuther Furth. 

Still, Leverkusen is a major favorite in this match as they have won four out of the last five games in all competitions and 5 out of the last 6 against Mainz.

Player to watch: With 3 goals already, Mousa Diaby is outperforming his 0.47 xG by 2.53 coming into the match against Mainz.

Freiburg vs Augsburg

Freiburg is the only undefeated team in the Bundesliga after five rounds besides Bayern Munich and Wolfsburg.

Freiburg has recorded two wins and three draws for sixth place in the standings while Augsburg is 11th with only one win and two scored goals.

Freiburg is coming off a scoreless draw against Mainz in the last round while Augsburg is coming from a 1-0 win over Borussia Monchengladbach.

In the last five games between this two teams, three matches have ended 1-1 and four out of five were under 2.5 goals. Five of their last ten games ended in draw.

Player to watch: Freiburg’s Nico Schlotterbeck is averaging 7.6 clearances per game.

Odds: Freiburg (1.70) | Draw (3.75) | Augsburg (5.00)

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Lyon vs Lorient

Lyon had a tough start of the season failing to win in the first three rounds. Since then, they have won three out of the last four games, losing only to PSG with a goal in the stoppage time.

Lyon is currently sixth on the standings with one point less than their next opponent.

Lorient has an impressive start of the season with only one loss in seven rounds. In four away games so far they have three draws and one loss.

In the last 10 games between this two opponents, both teams have three wins and four games have ended in draw.

Player to watch: Lyon’s Lucas Paqueta enters the game with 4 goals. He is tied with striker Moussa Dembele for the most on the team.

Real Madrid vs Villareal

Real Madrid has a great start of the season with five wins and one draw after six rounds. The only team that left the pitch undefeated against ‘Los Blancos’ was Levante after a 3-3 draw.

Carlo Ancelotti’s team is coming off an impressive 6-1 win over Mallorca last week.

Villareal on the other hand is a tough opponent but they recorded the only win of the season in the last round against Elche, with four draws in the previous matches.

Real has won four of the last ten games against Villareal, five matches have ended in a draw while Villareal has won only once back in 2018.

Player to watch: Karim Benzema comes into the match with a whopping 8 goals and 7 assists.

PSG vs Montpellier

PSG is on top of Ligue 1 with seven wins in seven games but not everyone is impressed by their game. 

Despite having the best team in the world, the Parisians barely won in the last two games with stoppage time goals against Lyon and Metz.

Leo Messi hasn’t scored yet for his new team and will miss the match against Montpellier due to injury.

Montpellier has nine points in seven games and doesn’t have much of a chance to avoid another loss in Paris.

PSG has won seven of the last ten games against Montpellier that has won only one with two matches ended in a draw.

Player to watch: Lionel Messi has yet to impress at his new club. Chalk it up to adjusting and growing pains. It’s his first time away. Comparisons with Ronaldo are meaningless for a variety of reasons. His xG at PSG is 0.51 and he’s underperforming that.

WORDS: Marko Mitevski

IMAGE CREDIT: Addesolen.

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