Bayern Munich will be hope to return to winning ways in the Bundesliga when they welcome Bochum to the Allianz Arena on Saturday afternoon.
While Bayern successfully cast aside Manchester United in the Champions League on Wednesday night, they were frustratingly held by Bayer Leverkusen in their last domestic outing.
A point on home soil against Xabi Alonso’s high-flyers certainly wasn’t disastrous, but Thomas Tuchel’s men came ever so close to laying down an early marker before they were pegged back at the death.
Nevertheless, the overwhelming majority will fancy them to win emphatically here, even if Bochum have proven to be stubborn opposition since they were thrashed 5-0 by Stuttgart on Matchday 1.
Here’s 90min’s preview of Bayern’s upcoming Bundesliga encounter.
Bundesliga coverage in Germany, Switzerland, Liechtenstein and Austria can be watched on DAZN (subscription) and Sat.1 free to air for Friday games only. Saturday, Tuesday and Wednesday games are shown live on Sky Sport Bundesliga (subscription) and highlights on Das Erste (Saturdays and Sunday)s) and ZDF (Saturdays) free to air.
With Bayern playing on Wednesday in the Champions League, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Thomas Tuchel make a few changes to his starting XI for Bochum’s visit.
Kingsley Coman, Matthijs de Ligt, and Noussair Mazraoui are thee players who could come into Tuchel’s side, while Mathys Tel is vying for minutes after continuing his impressive start to the season against Manchester United.
Raphael Guerreiro and Manuel Neuer remain out of action for the hosts.
Bayern predicted lineup (4-2-3-1): Ulreich; Mazraoui, De Ligt, Kim, Davies; Kimmich, Goretzka; Sane, Musiala, Coman; Kane.
The visitors have several injury concerns heading into Saturday’s game.
Thomas Letsch will not be able to call upon the services of former Bournemouth and Sheffield United forward Lys Mousset, who’s a long-term absentee, as well as Mohammed Tolba, who won’t return until the new year.
A knee injury will keep Michael Esser out of action until October, while Moritz-Broni Kwarteng and Jordi Oseu-Tutu are both doubts.
Bochum predicted lineup (3-5-2): Riemann; Masovic, Ordets, Bernardo; Passlack, Bero, Losilla, Stoger, Wittek; Hofmann, Asano.
The signs were ominous for Bochum after their opening-day horror show, but they’ve recovered well in recent weeks and have proven they won’t be the whipping boys of the Bundesliga.
Letsch’s side are well-drilled, and they showed against Eintracht Frankfurt that they also carry an attacking threat which Bayern’s high defensive line must be wary of this weekend. However, the visitors can’t feasibly hold Die Roten’s mighty attacking force off, can they?
Harry Kane has enjoyed a productive start to his Bayern career, and he’ll be looking to add to his goal tally in a big way on Saturday afternoon. This could be a typical Bavarian beatdown.