Created on 12-01-2021 at 16:51 PM
There can be only one! On Wednesday evening (live text and Webradio commentary from 20:45 CET on fcbayern.com), FC Bayern face Bundesliga 2 side Holstein Kiel in the 2nd round of the DFB Cup. And even if the roles are clearly defined before the first-ever competitive match between the two teams, everyone knows that the cup can throw up some surprises. We've put together everything you need to know about this clash.
The situation for FC Bayern
In the first round, the defending champions comfortably beat fifth-division side Düren 3-0, with newcomer Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting scoring a brace and Thomas Müller adding the third.
After 20 straight competitive matches without defeat, the treble winners were beaten 3-2 by Borussia Mönchengladbach last Friday. "Nothing happened, we're still top of the table. Now it's all about us doing the things we addressed better. We have to apply more pressure when they're in possession and shore up our defensive lines," demanded head coach Hansi Flick ahead of the cup clash in Kiel. Leon Goretzka was quite clear about what's required: "We have to somehow pick up on how we played in that first half-hour and see if we can get back on track on Wednesday."
The defending champions started the new cup campaign with a comfortable 3-0 win over fifth-division side 1. FC Düren. The second round match against Kiel, originally scheduled for 23 December, was postponed to this Wednesday due to the enormous number of games FC Bayern had to play before Christmas. A win against the third-placed team in Bundesliga 2 would see the record champions reaching the last 16 for the 20th time in a row. Waiting for them there: SV Darmstadt 98.
Team news, tactics and more: You can watch Hansi Flick's pre-match press conference before the cup clash with Kiel again (with English translation) here:
The opponents: Holstein Kiel
"The draw gifted us the biggest possible challenge of the competition. It's a great motivation to be able to compete against the best players in the world," said KSV head coach Ole Werner after the draw, delighted about the clash with the defending champions. Earlier, his team had reached the 2nd round with a convincing 7-1 win against Oberliga team FC Rielasingen-Arlen. In the league, the Storks wrapped up 2020 at the top of the table after a run of five straight wins. After the short Christmas holiday, however, the North Germans' charge faltered somewhat: One draw and one loss so far in 2021 mean that Kiel are currently sitting in third place.
Team News for Kiel vs. Bayern
Fully fit again: Serge Gnabry, who's been struggling lately, has been recalled to the FC Bayern squad against Holstein Kiel.
Head coach Flick will have to do without the two attackers Kingsley Coman and Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting for the clash with the team who spent Christmas at the top of Bundesliga 2. Coman "is experiencing some muscle problems, we don't want to take any risks there," Flick stressed. Choupo-Moting, who scored twice against Düren in the first round of the cup, is suffering from back problems and will not make the trip to the north. On the other hand, the 55-year-old boss can again call on Serge Gnabry, who has been struggling lately. "He completed the full training session and I assume there will be no problems. He's been firmly pencilled in," added Flick.
In Kiel, FC the Bayern players will wear a very special jersey in the match, sending a signal for diversity, tolerance and peaceful coexistence.
What the coaches say
Hansi Flick: "Kiel have nothing to lose. Like us, they're looking forward to this game. They've brought in good reinforcements and are a team that have a clear idea of how they want to play football. They can quickly play balls in behind when in possession. They've rightly established themselves at the top of the 2nd tier because they play good football. That's why we'll treat this task with the respect it deserves and it'll be important for us to get in there first."
Ole Werner (coachHolstein Kiel): "Obviously, we're the underdogs and going into the game no-one's going to give us much of a chance. We'll try to improve our chances with a good performance. We're aware of the task lying ahead of us. Of course, there's a special motivation to compete with the best German and currently the best club team in the world. But it won't change anything in terms of our preparation."
If you want to know more ahead of the game, check out our facts and stats