In the unusual position of playing catch up in the Bundesliga, Niko Kovac’s side cannot allow any points to slip away but started the year in imperious form with a fine 3-1 victory at Hoffenheim.
Stuttgart, meanwhile, are languishing towards the foot of the table with 12 defeats from 18 matches, having lost out 3-2 at home against Mainz last weekend.
|Game||Bayern Munich vs Stuttgart|
|Date||Sunday, January 27|
|Time||2:30pm GMT / 9:30am 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 1||fubo TV (7-day free trial)|
In the United Kingdom (UK), the game can be watched live on BT Sport 1 and livestreamed on BT Sport Live.
|UK TV channel||Online stream|
|BT Sport 1||BT Sport Live|
Squads & Team News
|Goalkeepers||Zieler, Meyer, Grahl|
|Defenders||Baumgartl, Kabak, Kempf, Badstuber, Aidonis, Sosa, Insua, Aogo, Maffeo, Beck|
|Midfielders||Ascacibar, Castro, Gentner, Zuber, Thommy, Kopacz, Didavi|
|Forwards||Akolo, Esswein, Dajaku, Gonzalez, Donis, Gomez|
Benjamin Pavard remains on the sidelines and will be unable to face the team he is due to sign for in the summer. Alexander Meyer is also missing.
Holger Badstuber, the former Bayern defender, is missing along with Timo Baumgartl.
Stuttgart starting XI: Zieler; Kabak, Beck, Kempf, Insua; Ascacibar, Gonzalez, Gentner; Esswein, Donis, Zuber.
|Position||Bayern Munich players|
|Defenders||Kimmich, Sule, Hummels, Alaba, Boateng|
|Midfielders||Martinez, Gnabry, Goretzka, James, Rafinha, Rodriguez, Davies, Thiago, Robben, Ribery|
|Forwards||Coman, Lewandowski, Muller, Wagner, Gnabry|
Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben have both been back in training but neither feature. Serge Gnabry has been struggling with a muscle problem this week and is out.
World Cup winner Corentin Tolisso remains laid up with a serious knee injury.
Bayern Munich starting XI: Neuer; Kimmich, Hummels, Sule, Alaba; Martinez, Thiago; Muller, Goretzka, Coman; Lewandowski.
Betting & Match Odds
Bayern Munich are priced at 1/12 to win, according to bet 365, while a draw is available at 12/1. A win for Stuttgart is priced at 20/1.
Bayern Munich started the season in disappointing form, but if last weekend’s 3-1 victory over Hoffenheim is anything to go by, they are determined to bridge the nine-point gap that currently separates them from Bundesliga leaders Borussia Dortmund after the latter's 5-1 win over Hannover on Saturday.
It was a bubbly performance from Bayern that gave them the victory, with a double from surprise No.10 Leon Goretzka in the first half providing the platform from which they could go on to claim the points.
“Sometimes as a coach you don't make such bad decisions,” Kovac said after the victory, doubtless considering the prospect of keeping the former Schalke player in that position for the weekend’s clash against Stuttgart – a team he has already found the net against this season.
The 23-year-old’s success as a playmaker even serves to cast further doubt on the future of James Rodriguez at Bayern. The Colombia star continues to be linked with a transfer to Arsenal, and though he is insistent that he does not want to go anywhere, the rumours continue to linger.
“He is comfortable in Munich,” his father told Marca this week. “I don’t have news about it, but there may be offers based on those rumours coming from England. He is calm and he feels that he’s at a good level again and that he’s physically strong. That gives us a perspective that he is happy, motivated and working well, as he is eager to achieve new success.”
Certainly, it seems unlikely that he might start at the weekend for a club who continue to be active in the transfer market, on Thursday securing the signature of USA starlet Chris Richards from FC Dallas.
Another defender that they have managed to capture may well face them on Sunday. World Cup winner Benjamin Pavard has signed a pre-contract agreement with FCB but his short-term focus will be on ensuring that Stuttgart move away from the relegation zone.
Last weekend they suffered a 3-2 home loss against Mainz, enjoying plenty of the match but managing to score only two goals in the last 10 minutes. It was a performance indicative of the fact that they have the poorest attack in the league.
Their prospects when facing up with a resurgent Bayern, then, look slim.