Created on 27-09-2013 at 16:09 PM
“Here we go again, look out, we’re starting. Fasten your seat belts and hold on tight, it’s going to be a wild ride!" This is the kind of thing you'll hear all over the fairground at Munich's Theresienwiese, site of the 180th Oktoberfest and as packed with thrills, rides and fun as ever. And Bayern fans are hoping for something akin to that when VfL Wolfsburg visit the Allianz Arena in the Bundesliga on Saturday (Live in English from 3.15 pm CET on FCB.tv Web Radio).
“It was fantastic to watch our team in our 4-0 victory away to Schalke," chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge wrote in his regular column for the Bayern Magazin. “In a wonderful match, we showed you can kick off the Oktoberfest in just the right way even when you’re more than 600 km away from it. It was a demonstration of the quality in our team. And that's how we have to carry on." Or to put it another way: “Fasten your seat belts and hold on tight, it’s going to be a wild ride!"
When the Wolves come to town, Bayern are not only looking to extend a run of four consecutive victories with 13 goals scored and only one conceded, but also win their third Oktoberfest fixture. And a good performance on Saturday would be the perfect tonic ahead of next Wednesday's challenging Champions League group fixture away to top English team Manchester City.
Pep Guardiola is likely to name a squad unchanged from the last two matches. And with Mario Götze completely fit again after an ankle injury, the coach has yet another attacking option. Germany international Götze completed the full squad training programme during the week, and could feature on Saturday for the first time since the UEFA Super Cup final against Chelsea.
“We have to concentrate and keep playing like we have done recently, because if we do, we have a big chance of winning," declared Franck Ribéry. However, ex-Wolves striker Mario Mandzukic is wary of his former club: “I know what makes them tick. Wolfsburg will definitely give everything to win here. But we're well-prepared, and we know we’re in good form. It has to end with a Bayern win." Both players were rested against Hannover in the cup on Wednesday, but are likely to start the Wolfsburg clash.
Judging by the tone of the pre-match comments from Lower Saxony, VfL are not holding out great hopes of a first-ever victory against FCB in Munich. “You can't see any weaknesses at Bayern," ventured Wolfsburg sporting director Klaus Allofs. “We'll need a very good day indeed if we’re to stand up to them." The Wolves have travelled to face the Bavarians 19 times in the league and cup, with the dismal outcome of 18 defeats and a solitary draw. VfL also have yet to take a point in three away fixtures this term, and have scored just once on their travels.
“Playing Bayern is like food that's tough to digest – but it can taste good too," coach Dieter Hecking offered on a more positive note. The Wolves last visited the Allianz Arena in April's DFB Cup semi-final, where they were thrashed 6-1. “It's entirely up to Bayern whether or not they let you have a chance. But if they do, we have to take advantage of that out on the field," stated Hecking, who welcomes back former Munich man Luiz Gustavo after suspension.