Bayern’s dominance of German football may not have been ended last term, but it was certainly shaken as Borussia Dortmund pushed them all the way to the final day before the title was sealed, and after going down 2-0 in the DFL-Supercup to BVB a fortnight ago, there are fresh questions over Bayern’s control.
First up for them is a Hertha outfit that finished a frustrating 11th last season and has hence elected to change coach.
Can Bayern meet expectations by securing a handsome victory?
|Game||Bayern Munich vs Hertha Berlin|
|Date||Friday, August 16|
|Time||7:30pm BST / 2:30pm ET|
|Stream (US)||fubo TV (7-day free trial)|
TV Channel, Live Stream & How To Watch
In the United States (US), the game can be watched live and on-demand with fuboTV (7-day free trial) .
New users can sign up for a free seven-day trial of the live sports streaming service, which can be accessed via iOS, Android, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Roku and Apple TV as well as on a web browser.
|US TV channel||Online stream|
|Fox Sports 2 / Fox Deportes||fubo TV (7-day free trial)|
In the UK, the match will be shown on BT Sport 2 and can be streamed via BT Sport Live.
|UK TV channel||Online stream|
|BT Sport 2||BT Sport Live|
Squads & Team News
|Position||Bayern Munich squad|
|Goalkeepers||Neuer, Ulreich, Fruchtl, Hoffmann|
|Defenders||Hernandez, Sule, Pavard, Boateng, Mai, Alaba, Kimmich|
|Midfielders||Thiago, Goretzka, Tolisso, Sanches, Singh|
|Forwards||Coman, Davies, Gnabry, Muller, Lewandowski, Arp, Wriedt|
New Bayern signing Ivan Perisic will have to wait for his debut as he is suspended for this encounter.
Javi Martinez is missing with a knee injury, with his return slated for the end of the month.
Bayern Munich starting XI: Neuer; Kimmich, Sule, Pavard, Alaba; Tolisso, Thiago, Muller; Gnabry, Lewandowski, Coman
|Position||Hertha Berlin squad|
|Defenders||Klunter, Rekik, Stark, Mittelstadt, Torunarigha|
|Midfielders||Grujic, Darida, Duda, Lukebakio, Esswein, Skjelbred, Friede, Lowen|
|Forwards||Ibisevic, Kalou, Kopke, Leckie, Selke|
Hertha have several selection problems in their defence, with Marvin Plattenhardt absent along with Peter Pekarik, Arne Maier and new signing Dedryck Boyata.
Additionally, midfielder Javairo Dilrosun is out.
Hertha Berlin starting XI: Jarstein; Klunter, Rekik, Stark, Mittelstadt; Grujic, Darida; Duda, Lukebakio, Leckie; Ibisevic
Betting & Match Odds
Bayern Munich are expected to win this match, with the champions priced at 1/7 favourites. Hertha are on offer at a lengthy 14/1, while the draw is 7/1.
Bayern Munich may enter the 2019-20 season with the same expectations, but having seen stalwarts Arjen Robben, Franck Ribery and Mats Hummels depart over the summer, there is little doubt that when they host Hertha Berlin on Friday, it is the start of a new era.
Niko Kovac’s side have won the last seven German titles but were pushed close last season by Borussia Dortmund and after making a slow start to that campaign, will be wary that doing so again could be more costly.
Indeed, Bayern were sent a message in the DFL-Supercup a fortnight ago as they were well beaten 2-0 by their nearest rivals as Paco Alcacer and Jadon Sancho scored second-half goals.
“It was the first match where everyone played 90 minutes, you can't expect more in this situation. I'm not dissatisfied, of course it wasn't an outstanding performance,” the coach said in reaction to defeat.
Nevertheless, it prompted Bayern to finally take some positive strides in the transfer market, reinforcing their attack with the arrival of Ivan Perisic, a player Kovac admitted was “second choice” following a serious injury to Manchester City’s Leroy Sane.
There may be more movement from the Bavarians before the transfer window closes, particularly if they fail to impress in their season opener.
Hertha, meanwhile, have also undergone change over the summer, with Pal Dardai displaced after four years and 172 matches in the role and reserve team boss Ante Covic promoted into a top job for the first time.
A lack of consistency dogged their play last term and the evidence of pre-season suggests that they are going to try to move the ball more quickly and in a more varied manner under their new boss. It has led to plenty of goals being scored in their pre-season matches, but Bayern will be salivating at the prospect of their erratic defence not having been tidied up over the summer months.
Friday’s match will give a better indication of where both these sides currently lie, with the capital outfit hopeful of a push for Europe.