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FCB set to improvise for LIGA total! Cup

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FCB set to improvise for LIGA total! Cup

Postby FCBayernNews » Fri Jul 30, 2010 7:45 pm

The Bundesliga restarts in three weeks' time, but Bayern will face their first halfway competitive test of pre-season without a long list of players, including 11 World Cup participants, injury victims Franck Ribéry, Hamit Altintop and Breno, and father-to-be Daniel van Buyten. The double winners, plus Hamburg, Köln and hosts Schalke, contest the LIGA total! Cup in Gelsenkirchen this weekend, but almost two-thirds of the senior Munich squad are unavailable.

"This tournament was planned a year ago and we have to deliver on our commitment, although it's obviously going to be difficult," commented coach Louis van Gaal ahead of Friday training. At that point in time, the boss was still unsure of his line-up for the meeting with Köln on Saturday at 6.35 in the evening, especially as the FCB reserves are at home to Wacker Burghausen in the third division on the same day.

A total of 24 players are available, and two teams have to be selected. "We'll have to share out the players we have accordingly," remarked Van Gaal. One or two FCB II starlets, potentially skipper Maximilian Haas or striker Nazif Hajdarovic, may well feature in Gelsenkirchen. On the other hand, with his partner expecting the birth of the couple's first child at any time, Van Buyten needs to remain in Munich and could turn out for the reserves.

Nevertheless, Van Gaal regards the two matches at the VeltinsArena this weekend as a genuine test ahead of the new season. At the end of the day, the players who are available will contest two "high-quality matches" of 30 minutes each way, which could see a clutch of players "tried out in new positions." For this reason, the 58-year-old insisted the LIGA total! Cup was "very valuable".

A party comprising three goalkeepers and 12 outfield players, five of them from the Bayern II squad, set out for Gelsenkirchen from Munich on Friday afternoon. On Saturday evening, following the third division fixture in Bavaria, David Alaba will also make the trip to the west of the country. "I need eleven players, but I don't have that at the moment," Van Gaal shrugged. To a large extent, FCB are victims of their own success at the World Cup: the German and Dutch stars who were involved until the very end in South Africa do not resume training until Monday.
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