You are not logged in or registered. Please login or register to use the full functionality of

Places in starting line-up up for grabs

News that's automatically retrieved from the official FC Bayern Munich website.

Places in starting line-up up for grabs

Postby FCBayernNews » Tue Jan 23, 2007 10:00 pm


The exceptionally mild winter up to now has ruined many a plan for traditional skiing holidays in Bavaria, but the scene took on a much more familiar January look at the Säbener Strasse on Tuesday, as the ground staff unpacked the snow shovels for the first time this season. Seven centimetres of the frozen white stuff covered the training ground in the morning, prompted a party comprising a dozen members of staff and youth players - and the more mature figure of reserve coach Hermann Gerland - to invest two hours in clearing pitch number 1 for the senior squad.

"It was to be expected that we'd have a real winter at some point," local boy Andreas Ottl remarked. The 21-year-old even uncovered a positive side to the slippery, wet conditions: "It'll be very similar to this on Friday," he remarked.

Friday is when Bayern reopen their Bundesliga campaign with a tricky away trip to Uefa Cup hopefuls Borussia Dortmund. Reporters, fans, so-called experts and all manner of pundits have begun speculating on the composition of the Munich side for the clash in the Ruhr valley. <b></b> surveys the various potential formations open to the reigning champions.

Club captain Oliver Kahn is certain to take his place between the sticks, with Philipp Lahm, Daniel van Buyten and Willy Sagnol also definite starters. The French right-back has been struggling with a calf problem of late, but came through the full training programme on Tuesday without any reaction and should be fit for the match. A question mark remains over who will partner Van Buyten at centre-half, although Lucio will probably get the nod ahead of Martin Demichelis, as the Aregentine has been laid low with back pain recently.

The engine room is the area of the park where coach Felix Magath has most work to do in sorting his available options. The boss has tried out two different systems in recent weeks: a diamond shape, which the Reds used to good advantage in the run-up to Christmas, and the alternative of two holding midfielders, the preferred system at the start of the season.

Magath as usual declined to drop any hints regarding his thinking for Friday, but in terms of the names on the team sheet, Mark van Bommel, Hasan Salihamidzic and Bastian Schweinsteiger must be close to certainties. Schweini missed Tuesday's training session with a cold, but is expected to join Wednesday's workout as normal.

The fourth midfield berth remains up for grabs. Magath's declared preference would be for Owen Hargreaves, but the England utility man only resumed team training 10 days ago after a long lay-off with a broken fibula, and did not appear in any winter friendly. A much more likely option would be Ottl in front of the back four, with Demichelis another defensive specialist should the head coach go for the double holding midfielder variant.

With Lukas Podolski only resuming training on Tuesday following a dead leg, Claudio Pizarro is the clear favourite to partner Roy Makaay up front.

Bayern's first starting line-up of the year 2007 will of course only become clear in reality approximately half an hour before the 8:30 pm kick-off this Friday. Until then, the Säbener Strasse snow-clearing parties look likely to have their work cut out, as weather forecasters are predicting more snow over Munich for the rest of the week.
User avatar
News fetcher
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
Posts: 10698
Joined: Thu Aug 31, 2006 11:46 am
Has thanked: 0 time
Been thanked: 161 times

Return to Official FC Bayern News

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Yandex [Bot] and 3 guests