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Bundesliga

  • September 22, 2012
  • • 14:30
  • • Veltins-Arena, Gelsenkirchen
  • Referee: K. Kircher
  • • Attendance: 61673
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Schalke - Bayern Munich Preview: The fierce rivals lock horns having both posted unbeaten starts

Schalke - Bayern Munich Preview: The fierce rivals lock horns having both posted unbeaten starts

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Jupp Heynckes and Huub Stevens will do battle for the first time this season on Saturday afternoon, with the pair enjoying identical scorelines in the Champions League this week

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

BAYERN MUNICH

Neuer
Lahm, Boateng, Dante, Badstuber
Schweinsteiger, Javi Martinez
Muller, Kroos, Robben
Mandzukic

SCHALKE

Unnerstall
Howedes, Papadopolous, Matip, Fuchs
Neustadter, Jones
Farfan, Holtby, Draxler
Huntelaar



It may lack the box office draw of El Clasico or the traditional allure of the Milan derby, but there can be no doubting the scale of the rivalry between Schalke and Bayern Munich.

On Saturday afternoon the pair do battle in Gelsenkirchen, with both sides looking to end one another’s unbeaten start to the campaign.

The Bavarians sit at the top of the Bundesliga and boast a 100 per cent record from their opening three games, while die Konigsblauen reside in fourth spot - just two points behind their fierce rivals.

If last season’s clashes between the pair are anything to go by then the hosts hold the upper hand, having emerged 2-0 victors on both occasions, with goalkeeper Manuel Neuer - who traded Schalke for Bayern 15 months ago - yet to concede against his former employers.

But, fresh off the back of a fine 2-1 Champions League win at Olympiakos in midweek - the same scoreline by which Bayern saw off Valencia on Wednesday evening - Huub Stevens’ charges will head into the game full of confidence.

Timo Hildebrand looks to be the only notable absentee from the Schalke squad, with Jermaine Jones a slight doubt, while Bayern will check on the fitness of Franck Ribery after he limped off at half-time on Wednesday evening. Mario Gomez remains sidelined with an ankle injury.



  DID YOU KNOW
  • Of their 92 meetings, Jupp Heynckes’ side have won 45 in comparison to Schalke’s 20, with a further 27 encounters ending in draws.
  • The Bavarians finished nine points ahead of Schalke in the Bundesliga last season and have accrued two points more than their rivals from the opening three league games of the current campaign.

  • Bayern Munich goalkeeper Manuel Neuer joined the club from Schalke in June 2011, for a fee of €18 million.
  • Schalke striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar became the first Dutchman to top the Bundesliga goalscoring charts last season, with a haul of 29 goals.

  • Die Konigsblauen last recorded a win over Bayern in March 2011, when they triumphed 1-0 at the Allianz Arena in the DFB-Pokal. Former striker Raul netted the only goal of the game.

  • Schalke have won four and drawn one of their opening five contests in all competitions this season.

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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
36Lars UnnerstallGoalkeeper
4Benedikt HöwedesDefender
14Kyriakos PapadopoulosDefender
23Christian FuchsDefender
32Joel MatipDefender
10Lewis HoltbyMidfielder
13Jermaine JonesMidfielder
17Jefferson Agustin FarfánStriker
10Julian DraxlerMidfielder
33Roman NeustädterMidfielder
25Klaas-Jan HuntelaarStriker
1Ralf FährmannGoalkeeper
22Atsuto UchidaDefender
6Sead KolasinacDefender
19Ibrahim AfellayMidfielder
12Marco HögerMidfielder
27Tranquillo BarnettaMidfielder
20Teemu PukkiStriker
1Manuel NeuerGoalkeeper
4DanteDefender
17Jerome BoatengDefender
21Philipp LahmDefender
28Holger BadstuberDefender
10Arjen RobbenMidfielder
22Luiz GustavoMidfielder
31Bastian SchweinsteigerMidfielder
39Toni KroosMidfielder
9Mario MandzukicStriker
25Thomas MüllerStriker
22Tom StarkeGoalkeeper
13RafinhaMidfielder
8Javi MartínezMidfielder
11Xherdan ShaqiriMidfielder
38Emre CanMidfielder
44Anatoliy TymoshchukMidfielder
14Claudio PizarroStriker
Players to Watch
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 25
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
The summer has been dominated by rumours of a breakdown in contract negotiations between player and club, but that has not had any impact on his ability to find the back of the net.

Huntelaar scored the winning goal against Olympiakos on Tuesday evening and he already has two Bundesliga goals to his name from the opening three league games of the season.

If Schalke are to end Bayern's 100 per cent record, then the Dutchman's eye for goal could well prove to be crucial.
Bastian Schweinsteiger
Bastian Schweinsteiger
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 31
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0

After a frustrating, injury-hit 12 months which culminated in him losing his place in the Germany squad earlier this month, Bastian Schweinsteiger will be hopeful that his goal against Valencia on Wednesday night will kick-start a run of form.

The 28-year-old has added competition in central midfield, following the arrival of Spain international Javi Martinez, but with the pair operating well together in midweek, they look set to become Jupp Heynckes’ first choice partnership.

Schweinsteiger's experience will be key in thwarting the youthful threat posed by Schalke prospects Julian Draxler and Lewis Holtby, in what promises to be an intriguing battle.

Prediction
Champions League commitments will have been a drain on both sides this week and with the pair in fine form going into the game, a close-fought encounter can be expected and a point apiece at full-time.
Editor's Prediction
Bayern 1

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