Created on 21-02-2013 at 00:00 AM
The year 2013 has proved a damp squib for Claudio Pizarro so far. The striker looked sharp in mid-season training and scored three goals in friendly matches, but he has not featured in the six competitive games since then. Two bouts of illness and a delayed return from international duty have prevented the Peruvian gaining a single minute of playing time.
Pizza is naturally hoping for that to change soon, and Saturday would be the ideal opportunity, as the striker’s former club Werder Bremen visit the Allianz Arena. “Obviously, it's a very special match for me," the 35-year-old told fcbayern.de on Thursday. Claudio spent a total of six years in Bremen, scoring 89 goals in 159 matches.
Top non-German scorer in the Bundesliga
The Peru hitman missed out on Bayern's victories over Wolfsburg and Arsenal with tonsillitis, but he is fully recovered now and resumed the squad training programme on Wednesday. “Everything’s fine again," the player said, “I'm feeling very good and I'm delighted to be back out on the pitch." However, it remains to be seen whether he will feature against his former team-mates.
Following Tuesday's Champions League victory at Arsenal's Emirates Stadium, Jupp Heynckes indicated he would reintroduce squad rotation in certain positions, “but he’s not yet said who'll play," Pizarro revealed. The striker, the leading non-German scorer in Bundesliga history with 160 goals in 343 matches, is desperately hoping for a run out on Saturday and the chance to polish up his already glittering personal stats.
Pizza predicts tough clash
The northern giants have been unpredictable and inconsistent so far this term, but Pizarro still expects “a tricky match." Realistically, Werder need at least a point from Saturday's match to preserve their slim hopes of European football next season, but their former goal-getter is confident of victory for the men in red: “We're at home and on a good run. I think we'll win the match."