Hamburg - Bayern Munich Preview: Visitors looking to bounce back
The Bavarians slipped to their first Bundesliga defeat of the season last week, but will be hoping to build up another winning run when they travel to the Imtech Arena on Saturday
By Enis Koylu
Diekmeier, Mancienne, West'nn, Jansen
Son, Van der Vaart, Ilicevic
Lahm, Boateng, Dante, Alaba
Muller, Kroos, Robben
Hamburg are expected to make a couple of changes from the side that beat Augsburg 2-0 last week for the visit of Bayern.
Tomas Rincon could come in for Tolgay Arslan in midfield as Thorsten Fink looks to keep out Bayern's attack, while Ivo Ilicevic is fit after a hamstring injury to replace Maxilimilian Beister at left-wing.
However, Lam Zhi Gin is lacking match fitness, Slobodan Rajkovic is suspended and Petr Jiracek has a thigh problem forcing him to miss the clash.
Having rested a number of players for the 4-0 DFB-Pokal win over Kaiserslautern, Bayern wil be able to name a more recognisable team for the trip to the Imtech Arena. Manuel Neuer did not feature on Wednesday and will come back into the team in place of Tom Starke.
At the back, Holger Badstuber has an injury, so David Alaba will replace him at left-back, with Philipp Lahm, Jerome Boateng and Dante completing the back four.
In midfield, Javi Martinez and Luiz Gustavo have been rotated this season, but with the Spaniard having played in midweek, the Brazilian can expect to start.
Franck Ribery is still an injury doubt, but Arjen Robben can fill in, having marked his first start since a lengthy injury with two goals against Lautern. Finally, Mario Mandzukic will reclaim his place up front, ahead of Claudio Pizarro as Mario Gomez continues his recovery from ankle surgery.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Hamburg already faced Bavarian opposition three times this season. They crashed to a 1-0 home defeat to Nurnberg on matchday one, but have since overcome Greuther Furth and Augsburg.
- Jacopo Sala's only Bundesliga goal to date helped the Imtech Arena outfit hold Bayern to a 1-1 draw in this fixture last season.
- Hamburg boss Thorsten Fink (pictured, right) represented the Bavarians between 1997 and 2006, and won four Bundesliga titles with die Roten.
- Bayern Munich have not lost to Hamburg in the league since matchday seven of the 2009-10 season, and have recorded 5-0 and 6-0 victories over Saturday's opponents since then.
- The Bavarians have conceded four Bundesliga goals this season, but none of these have come on the road.
- Bayern attacker Xherdan Shaqiri was coached by Fink at Basel between 2009 and 2011, but the trainer left for the Imtech Arena shortly after the start of last season.
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Top 3 Predictions
Hamburg 0-2 FC Bayern München
- 15.69 %
Hamburg 1-3 FC Bayern München
- 13.84 %
Hamburg 0-3 FC Bayern München
- 13.55 %
|1. Bundesliga (GER1)||Mar 30, 2013||FC Bayern München 9 - Hamburg 2|
|1. Bundesliga (GER1)||Nov 3, 2012||Hamburg 0 - FC Bayern München 3|
|Club Friendlies (FR)||Aug 5, 2012||FC Bayern München 1 - Hamburg 0|
|1. Bundesliga (GER1)||Feb 4, 2012||Hamburg 1 - FC Bayern München 1|
|1. Bundesliga (GER1)||Aug 20, 2011||FC Bayern München 5 - Hamburg 0|
|May 18, 2013||Hamburg 0 - Bayer 04 Leverkusen 1||GER1|
|May 11, 2013||Hoffenheim 1 - Hamburg 4||GER1|
|May 5, 2013||Hamburg 1 - VfL Wolfsburg 1||GER1|
|Apr 28, 2013||Schalke 04 4 - Hamburg 1||GER1|
|Apr 20, 2013||Hamburg 2 - F. Düsseldorf 1||GER1|
|Returns:||HSV £670.00||Sign up with William Hill for a free bet up to £25|
|Returns:||Draw £340.00||Sign up with William Hill for a free bet up to £25|
|Returns:||Bayern £14.00||Sign up to Paddy Power for £250 in free bets|
|18||Tolgay Ali Arslan||Midfielder|
|23||Rafael van der Vaart||Midfielder|
|30||Luiz Gustavo Dias||Midfielder|
The South Korea international has been in fantastic form of late, spearheading Hamburg's recent revival with a flurry of goals and assists. With David Alaba short of match fitness at left-back, Son Heung-Min could be Hamburg's key to unlocking the Bayern defence on Saturday with his direct running, excellent delivery, and smart finishing.
After Arjen Robben marked his return to Jupp Heynckes' starting line-up with two goals against Kaiserslautern on Wednesday, everyone will be expecting the Dutchman to repeat the trick against Hamburg. The former Real Madrid winger has a point to prove, having admitted that he was close to retiring during his injury break, and there will no better way for him to do so than against an in-form Hamburg.
Last weekend's loss aside, Bayern have been in exceptional form this season, and I'd expect them to continue that. With the likes of Arjen Robben and David Alaba restored to their starting line-up, they will be a formidable force, and I'd back the Bavarians to overcome Hamburg fairly simply, despite the hosts' good form.
Times In GMT
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed