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Bayern aim to maintain winning streak

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Bayern aim to maintain winning streak

Postby FCBayernNews » Fri Nov 24, 2006 8:20 pm


Felix Magath would never realistically claim Hamburg SV is just a club like any other from his personal point of view. The Bayern boss spent a full decade of his playing career with the northerners, clocking up a total of 306 Bundesliga appearances and winning the championship three times, before the crowning glory of a European Cup triumph in 1983. The winning goal in the final was scored by a certain Felix Magath.

After hanging up his boots, he filled the general manager position before taking charge as head coach, thus spending half of his time in the game associated with HSV. "Yes, I have done a few things at the club. After Bayern, Hamburg are the German team I look out for first," the 53-year-old acknowledged. However, all affectionate and nostalgic thoughts will be put aside at the weekend when he leads Bayern to face his former club. "We want to win and continue our progress up the table," he declared.

<b>Hamburg in crisis</b>

The northerners were serious title contenders last term and did the home and away double over Munich, but their fortunes have plummeted this season. HSV are out of the German Cup, have lost all five of their Champions League fixtures, and lie 17th in the Bundesliga, deep in the relegation mire.

Despite all this, Magath warned his troops not to underestimate Saturday's opponents, as he regarded Thomas Doll's team as "dangerous, like a wounded boxer. They stood up and fought in London." HSV resisted mighty Arsenal until the closing stages in midweek, before losing 3-1 to two late goals. The Bayern boss is assuming his former charges will soon turn the corner and begin climbing the table, although he would prefer that to happen after the next round of matches. "We want to win the league, so we need the points," he reasoned.

<b>Kahn targets clean sheet</b>

The Bavarians have yet to keep a clean sheet away from home this term, but Oliver Kahn has vowed to stop that poor run. "We mustn't let them have too many chances, we have to be more disciplined. Spartak had too many openings on Wednesday," the club captain observed. At the other end of the field, Magath called on his strikers to make more of their opportunities: "We need to repeat the performance we gave in Moscow, and shift up another gear as well."

Bayern welcome back Philipp Lahm and Lucio to the matchday squad, but the Germany international is the more likely to start, as Daniel van Buyten and Martin Demichelis have formed a rock-solid centre-back partnership of late. "Daniel was outstanding in Moscow," Magath opined.

<b>Magath expects cauldron of noise</b>

On balance, the Reds coach is unlikely to make wholesale changes and will probably restrict himself to re-introducing Lahm. Whichever line-up takes the field, the boss knows the men in red face a stern task. "The ground will be full and the fans up for it. We have to be prepared for that," he warned.

<b>Probable line-ups:</b>

<b>Hamburg SV:</b> Wächter - Benjamin, Reinhardt, Mathijsen, Atouba - Fillinger, Wicky, Van der Vaart, Trochowski - Sanogo, Guerrero

<b>Bayern Munich:</b> Kahn - Sagnol, Van Buyten, Demichelis, Lahm - Van Bommel, Ottl, Schweinsteiger, Salihamidzic - Makaay, Pizarro
<b>Also in matchday squad:</b> Rensing, Lucio, Lell, Santa Cruz, Karimi, Deisler, Dos Santos

<b>Referee:</b> Thorsten Kinhöfer (Herne)

<b>Bayern's record in the fixture:</b> P41 W19 D10 L12 F 70 A49
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