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CL opener in Piraeus

FCB aim to start 'ideally with a win'

FC Bayern start this year's Champions League group stage with great confidence but also due respect. “We want to start well, ideally with a win, preserving the momentum from the Bundesliga,” said chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge before the FCB party departed for the first group match in Piraeus on Wednesday.

“We're in a group that must not be underestimated,” Rummenigge cautioned: opponents like the Greek serial champions, Dinamo Zagreb or Arsenal are not to be taken lightly. The opener against Olympiacos in particular is dangerous, stressed Rummenigge: “Big teams such as Borussia Dortmund or Manchester United were beaten in Piraeus. We have to avoid that,” commented Rummenigge, calling for the players to be “serious and focused.”

Bayern head coach Pep Guardiola will be able to field Mario Götze on Wednesday. The Germany international, who missed the derby against Augsburg due to slight muscular problems, completed the team training session on Monday and will be part of the Bayern line-up. Guardiola is without the services of Arjen Robben, Mehdi Benatia, Holger Badstuber, Jan Kirchhoff, and Franck Ribéry though.

Rummenigge is certain that the Frenchman, missing since March due to a persistent ankle injury, will return. The chairman said that the diagnosis is now correct and the medical unit is able to provide the appropriate treatment. “He'll come back. That's what's important.”

More news and opinion after the arrival in Piraeus in the late afternoon!

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