Bayern still hurting from Dortmund losses, says Hitzfeld

The legendary German coach believes the Bavarians will be eager to overcome the Bundesliga champions on Wednesday, given their poor run against BVB in recent seasons
Former Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich coach Ottmar Hitzfeld believes the Bavarians are still reeling from their five straight losses against the Signal Iduna side.

Jupp Heynckes' troops have beaten BVB just once in the last six meetings between the two sides - in the DFL-Supercup in August - and the current Switzerland boss feels they will be eager for revenge when they meet on Wednesday in the DFB-Pokal.

"Bayern are still stinging from having lost all of the recent important matches against Dortmund," he told Sport1.

"They have done some catching up, and now they want to cement their dominance in Germany face to face with them.

"The two top teams in Germany are meeting. It is always exciting to see when Bayern can finally beat Dortmund. Both teams are at eye level. It will be an open game, and their form on the day will decide it."

BVB have fared far better in Europe than in recent seasons, and Hitzfeld feels their Champions League exertions have affected their domestic form.

"Dortmund have perhaps unwittingly concentrated more on the Champions League because there was a greater need to improve and lost three times in the league [early in the season].

"Conversely, Bayern exploited their weak start to the Bundesliga season and pulled away quickly."

Bayern have been linked with a move for Dortmund star Robert Lewandowski in the summer, and Hitzfeld believes the Bavarians are looking to weaken their rivals.

"It hasn't been confirmed that he will leave. He's under contract until 2014, so BVB decide what happens to him," he continued.

"But, due to the persistent rumours, the game will become explosive. The strategy behind it is to weaken the competition.

"Only Lewandowski can prove that he is better than Mario Mandzukic and Mario Gomez."

Finally, Hitzfeld voiced his belief that Bayern are as strong now as they were in the 1970s, when they claimed three straight European Cups.

"Bayern have never bad such a strong squad in terms of depth. Whether it's the best-ever Bayern team, we can only say after the season, because they must show it with titles.

"But the quality has never been as high as it is at the moment. They are comparable with the team of Sepp Maier, Franz Beckenbauer and Gerd Muller."