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Bayern Munich - Stuttgart Preview: Heynckes' side look to continue winning start against souther rivals
Bruno Labbadia's men will be aiming to bounce back from their opening weekend loss to Wolfsburg during the tricky trip to the Allianz Arena
By Enis Koylu
Lahm, Boateng, Badstuber, Can
Luiz Gustavo, Kroos
Robben, Muller, Ribery
Sakai, Tasci, Maza, Boka
Harnik, Hajnal, Okazaki
Bayern Munich are set to welcome back Emre Can into the starting line-up after the youngster sat out the 3-0 opening-day win over Greuther Furth.
He should take the place of Dante and slot in of the left-hand side of defence, with full-backs Rafinha, David Alaba and Diego Contento all nursing pre-season injuries.
Bastian Schweinsteiger is still struggling for fitness after a series of niggling injuries, but Toni Kroos, rather than €40 million signing Javi Martinez, will start alongside Luiz Gustavo in midfield. Franck Ribery is fine after missing the Furth clash with a virus, and will come in for Xherdan Shaqiri.
Mario Mandzukic will start up front as Mario Gomez continues his recovery from ankle surgery.
Despite a long-haul trip to Moscow for Europa League commitments, Stuttgart are set to name an unchanged side after Bruno Labbadia announced a host of changes for the clash with Dinamo.
Gotoku Sakai took Tim Hoogland's spot in at right-back for the midweek match, and is set to retain his spot alongside Serdar Tasci, Maza, and Arthur Boka.
In midfield, Christian Gentner will continue in the stead of Ibrahima Traore in the deep-lying positions, with Tamas Hajnal, Shinji Okazaki and Martin Harnik providing support for Vedad Ibisevic, who bounced back from his penalty miss against Wolfsburg by scoring against Dinamo.
Daniel Didavi remains sidelined with a long-term injury problem.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Bayern Munich played against Stuttgart three times last season, and triumphed on each occasion. Mario Gomez scored in all three encounters, but is injured for this clash.
- Several Bayern players have represented Stuttgart, including Philipp Lahm, who enjoyed a loan spell there, Mario Gomez, and Holger Badstuber, who came through the club's academy.
- The Bavarians triumphed over their southern rivals in the 1986 DFB-Pokal final with a 5-2 scoreline.
- The last time Stuttgart were victorious at the Allianz Arena was in 2009-10. Bayern went on to win a domestic double, but were beaten by Inter in the Champions League final.
- Vfb defender Georg Niedermeier spent a total of 14 years at Bayern before moving to his current club in 2009.
- Stuttgart last won the Bundesliga in 2007-08, Bayern finished in fourth place - the last time they failed to qualify for the Champions League.
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Top 3 Predictions
FC Bayern München 3-0 VfB Stuttgart
- 21.91 %
FC Bayern München 2-0 VfB Stuttgart
- 15.57 %
FC Bayern München 3-1 VfB Stuttgart
- 14.73 %
|1. Bundesliga (GER1)||Jan 27, 2013||VfB Stuttgart 0 - FC Bayern München 2|
|1. Bundesliga (GER1)||Sep 2, 2012||FC Bayern München 6 - VfB Stuttgart 1|
|1. Bundesliga (GER1)||Apr 28, 2012||FC Bayern München 2 - VfB Stuttgart 0|
|Germany - DFB-Pokal (GERC)||Feb 8, 2012||VfB Stuttgart 0 - FC Bayern München 2|
|1. Bundesliga (GER1)||Dec 11, 2011||VfB Stuttgart 1 - FC Bayern München 2|
|FC Bayern München|
|May 18, 2013||Borussia Mönchengladbach 3 - FC Bayern München 4||GER1|
|May 11, 2013||FC Bayern München 3 - FC Augsburg 0||GER1|
|May 4, 2013||Borussia Dortmund 1 - FC Bayern München 1||GER1|
|May 1, 2013||FC Barcelona 0 - FC Bayern München 3||UCL|
|Apr 27, 2013||FC Bayern München 1 - SC Freiburg 0||GER1|
|Returns:||Bayern £12.50||Sign up to Paddy Power for £250 in free bets|
|Returns:||Draw £610.00||Sign up with William Hill for a free bet up to £25|
|Returns:||VfB Stuttgart £710.00||Sign up with William Hill for a free bet up to £25|
|30||Luiz Gustavo Dias||Midfielder|
|5||Daniel Van Buyten||Defender|
|2||Francisco Javier Rodríguez||Defender|
|4||William Kvist Jörgensen||Midfielder|
|13||Mamadou Djouldé Bah||Midfielder|
After a largely frustrating campaign at both club and international level last season, Thomas Muller faces a critical season in his development as a footballer. Having rejected talk of a move away from the Allianz Arena over the summer, he seems to have since turned a corner, scoring a vital goal in the 2-1 win over Dortmund and getting the ball rolling in the 3-0 victory against Greuther Furth last week, and in a local derby at plenty at stake, he will be hoping to continue his renaissance on Sunday.
One player who always looks capable of producing something for Stuttgart, both as a goalscorer and as a creator is Martin Harnik. The Austrian was head and shoulders above the rest of his team-mates last season, and produced an enviable run of goalscoring form, and although he was largely anonymous in the loss to Wolfsburg, he will be absolutely vital to the visitors' chances of securing an unlikely victory against a Bayern side on top form.
After having their pride hurt by a catastrophic end to last season, Bayern have well and truly hit the ground running this season with a string of impressive performances. Their new signings have blended in nicely, complimenting the squad they have available, and the absence of key players has not been an issue. Stuttgart meanwhile, have made a shaky start to the new campaign, and were in poor nick against Wolfsburg. Accordingly, I'd expect Heynckes' troops to secure local bragging rights with an easy victory.
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed