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  • October 6, 2012
  • • 14:30
  • • Allianz-Arena, München
  • Referee: T. Stieler
  • • Attendance: 71000

Bayern Munich - Hoffenheim Preview: Bavarians look to bounce back from Champions League shock

Bayern Munich - Hoffenheim Preview: Bavarians look to bounce back from Champions League shock


Jupp Heynckes' side saw their winning start to the season ended abruptly by BATE in Europe on Tuesday but can take heart from their 7-1 thrashing of Saturday's guests in March

Lahm, Boateng, Dante, Badstuber
Martinez, Schweinsteiger
Muller, Kroos, Shaqiri
Beck, Delpierre, Compper, Johnson
Williams, Rudy
Volland, Firmino, Usami

Bayern suffered a humilating loss to BATE Borisov in midweek, and have been further taxed by the news that Franck Ribery is likely to miss this clash, while Arjen Robben has still not recovered from the problem that forced him to miss the trip to Minsk. Accordingly, Thomas Muller will continue on the right wing, with Xherdan Shaqiri slotting in on the left, with Toni Kroos playing as a No.10.

However, long-term absentees David Alaba and Mario Gomez are still working their way back to fitness after their respective pre-season foot and ankle injuries, allowing Holger Badstuber to keep his place at left-back and Mario Mandzukic to start up front, despite Claudio Pizarro featuring against Werder Bremen.

Injuries and suspension, meanwhile, have plagued Hoffenheim coach Markus Babbel in a difficult start to the new Bundesliga season. Goalkeeper Tim Wiese, and defensive duo Chris and Matthias Jaissle are all injured. Koen Casteels will continue in the former Germany keeper's stead, while Andreas Beck, Mathieu Delpierre, Marvin Compper and Fabian Johnson will form the back four.

Boris Vukcevic is still in a coma after his tragic car crash last week, and Sejad Salihovic is suspended after being sent off for a vicious foul in the match against Augsburg, with Roberto Firmino lining up in his place. Eren Derdiyok could return and replace Joselu as the lone striker.

  • Bayern Munich's nine-match winning streak came to an abrupt end on Tuesday when they slumped to a 3-1 defeat against BATE Borisov in the Champions League in Minsk.

  • However, the Bavarians have won all six of their games in the Bundesliga this season, and are yet to concede a single goal away from home.
  • Jupp Heynckes' side bounced back from a disappointing loss - to Bayer Leverkusen - in this fixture last season, with Arjen Robben netting a double.
  • Having lost all three of their first Bundesliga games, Hoffenheim are now unbeaten in the last three, winning twice and drawing once.

  • Current Rhein Neckar Arena boss Markus Babbel (pictured, right) represented Bayern during his playing career. The former right-back made 182 Bundesliga appearances for die Roten across two spells in the 1990s, and finally left the Allianz Arena for Liverpool in 2000.

  • Takashi Usami spent last season on loan at the Allianz Arena, but having failed to break into Jupp Heycnkes' first team, sealed another loan move to Germany from Gamba Osaka. He has scored two Bundesliga goals in six games for his current side.

Players to watch

T. Kroos

Position: Midfielder

Games: 0

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After spending years on the periphery, Toni Kroos is finally starting to find his top form in a Bayern shirt, scoring a string of spectacular goals as his side made an excellent start to the new Bundesliga season. He seems to have finally confirmed his place in Jupp Heynckes' first team, but, having missed an excellent opportunity top open the scoring in midweek, will need to bounce back as soon as possible.

T. Usami

Position: Attacker

Games: 0

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There will be no one who is more eager to prove a point on Saturday than Takashi Usami. Having spent a year in the wilderness at the Allianz Arena, with his playing time limited to insignificant matches, he has made a steady start to life at Hoffenheim, scoring two goals in his first six games for his new club. And, on Saturday, he will have the chance to show Jupp Heynckes & Co. that they were wrong to underestimate him during his time in Bavaria.

Editor's Prediction

Bayern may have suffered a humiliating defeat in midweek to BATE, but that will only serve to make Jupp Heynckes' side more cautious for the visit of Hoffenheim. In truth, the Bavarians have a poor record on the road in Europe, by no means one of their problems at home, and they can be expected to record a convincing morale-boosting victory over Markus Babbel's side, who have been disappointing this season, in truth.

Last Five Matches

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TSG 1899 Hoffenheim HOF
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Top 3 Predictions

FC Bayern München BAY
3 - 0
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8 - 0
TSG 1899 Hoffenheim HOF