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Bundesliga News

Predictions for the opening weekend of the 2. Bundesliga 2022/23 season

By Jonathan Dicks

The 2. Bundesliga rapidly returns with the first matchday of the 2022/23 season set to begin tomorrow. Here are previews and predictions for all 9 opening weekend contests.

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Hannover 96 at FC Kaiserslautern


Expect a ludicrous atmosphere at the Fritz-Walter-Stadion as Kaiserslautern is finally back after four very long years away. New coach Stefan Leitl takes over for Hannover who has leading goal-scorer Sebastian Kerk, although the loss of Linton Maina on a free to FC Köln hurts. Philipp Hercher is coming off a huge year for the Red Devils as he joins newcomers Andreas Luthe and Erik Durm from the top flight. A Friday night showdown between two massive fanbases that both desperately need promotion. This should be so much fun.

Prediction: Hannover 96 3 - FC Kaiserslautern 3


Holstein Kiel at SpVgg Greuther Fürth

Fürth quickly returns to the 2. Bundesliga with new trainer Marc Schneider, who last coached Belgian second division side Waasland-Beveren. He will have the difficult task replacing speedster Jamie Leweling, who’s left to Union Berlin. Captain Hauke Wahl leads Kiel’s defense, while Alexander Mühling and Benedikt Pichler look to continue their decent form in front of goal. It’s easy to see both sides challenging for promotion come next May, so expect this to be a tight matchup.


Prediction: Holstein Kiel 0 - SpVgg Greuther Fürth 1


Darmstadt 98 at SSV Jahn Regensburg

Darmstadt was ever so close to gaining promotion last year while Jahn Regensburg nearly went down. While Luca Pfeiffer is staying in Denmark, forward Phillip Tietz is still around as Darmstadt will continue to look up at the table. A promotion would give Die Lilien their first season in the top flight since 2016/17. It feels these clubs are on opposite trajectories as Jahn will need a miracle to escape the first division, as they’ve never experienced life in the Bundesliga.

Prediction: Darmstadt 98 3 - SSV Jahn Regensburg 1


Arminia Bielefeld at SV Sandhausen

The club will dearly miss Patrick Wimmer and Stefan Ortega, although fans must feel a sense of pride seeing the goalkeeper earn a move to Manchester City. Uli Forte takes over a Bielefeld team that still has a decent group of players, including young American defender George Bello and midfielder Masaya Okugawa. Sandhausen really struggled last campaign and it doesn’t feel like they’ve made enough moves to turn their luck around.

Prediction: Arminia Bielefeld 2 - SV Sandhausen 1


FC Nürnberg at FC St. Paul

This is an extremely exciting matchup to start the year between two clubs that should be near the top of the table by season’s end. Nürnberg turned some heads with some super goals in a friendly against Arsenal, as new signing Kwadwo Duah has already impressed. St. Pauli will sorely miss Daniel-Kofi Kyereh and Guido Burgstaller, but still maintain the quality to make another run at promotion. This could prove to be the game of the weekend.

Prediction: FC Nürnberg 3 - FC St. Pauli 2


Fortuna Düsseldorf at FC Magdeburg

Magdeburg convincingly claimed the 3. Liga title last year which resulted in quite the turnover this offseason, as three players all strangely moved to Paderborn. It’s hard to say they have the firepower to hang with Düsseldorf, who just signed Japanese international Ao Tanaka for over a million euros. Düsseldorf are two years removed from filling up the 54,600 seat Merkur Spiel-Arena in the first division. Maybe three times the charm?

Prediction: Fortuna Düsseldorf 2 - FC Magdeburg 0


Karlsruher SC at SC Paderborn

These are two clubs badly looking to escape the middle of the pack. Paderborn turned center-back Jasper van der Werff’s loan into a permanent move, but are still looking for the perfect Sven Michel replacement up front. Karlruher lost Philipp Hofmann to Bochum, but still has Marvin Wanitzek to bag some goals in the midfield. A tight, possibly low-scoring contest awaits.

Prediction: Kalsruher SC 1 - SC Paderborn 1


Hamburger SV at Eintracht Braunschweig

Hamburg is another team that was oh so close to a place in this year’s Bundesliga. But here they are again for the 5th straight season in the second division. Hamburg lost Joshua Vagnoman to Stuttgart, but brought in Croatian defender Mario Vušković for a whopping €3 million euros. Braunschweig barely held onto promotion from the 3. Liga as Hamburg are a favorite for the 2. Bundesliga title. Will Die Rothosen mess it up yet again?

Prediction: Hamburger SV 3 - Eintracht Braunschweig 1


FC Heidenheim at Hansa Rostock

Two clubs seemingly stuck in 2. Bundesliga purgatory are battling it out for any chance at first-division football. Rostock are led by forward John Verhoek who had 17 goals last season and captain goalkeeper Markus Kolke. Heidenheim sold winger Tobias Mohr to Schalke, but brought in Jan-Niklas Beste from Werder Bremen. It just feels as if these are two mid-table squads once again.

Prediction: FC Heidenheim 2 - Hansa Rostock 2


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