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Bundesliga Matchday 6
  • 23' Vedad Ibisevic
  • 44' Ondrej Duda
Hertha BSC Berlin
2 : 0
(2:0)
FC Bayern Munich
  • 23' Vedad Ibisevic
  • 44' Ondrej Duda
"Want to get three points"

Kovac hoping for successful trip home

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Bayern are rightly looking forward to Friday evening’s match against Hertha BSC (live Webradio and ticker from 2:30 pm ET on fcbayern.com, live on FS1 and Univision ). The floodlights will be on and it’s fourth against first with both teams looking to bounce back from disappointing results in midweek having made strong starts to the season. All the ingredients are there. For Bayern, it’s a case of showing that Tuesday’s 1-1 draw at home to Augsburg was just a minor blip.

“We want to succeed in Berlin where we failed on Tuesday,” said Niko Kovac, outlining the objective. A win would be particularly special for the FCB boss as he returns to his home city. “It’s always nice to go home. We’re staying overnight and I have a few relatives and friends there who I’ll meet after the game,” added the Berliner.

Goretzka ruled out – Meier called up

Work comes first, though, and the 46-year-old will once again have to mull over his line-up. Alongside Kingsley Coman, Rafinha and Corentin Tolisso, Leon Goretzka will also miss the trip to the capital after being forced off with an injury against Augsburg. “He has a swollen ankle,” revealed Kovac. Left-back Jonathan Meier has therefore been promoted from the reserve squad and the 18-year-old could even get a runout if “the game is going well”.

Bayern will need to make better use of their chances than they did on Tuesday, but that’s the only criticism the coach had of his side. “It would be worse if we weren’t creating any chances at all,” he said. That certainly wasn’t the case for the record German champions, despite Augsburg’s close man marking all over the pitch. “I’m not expecting Hertha to do that,” added Kovac, offering a different assessment of the opposition.

Highlight for Hertha

“They’ve played some very good football, I’ve been very impressed,” he said. “They’re a technically adept, disciplined team who try to win their home games, so it will be a real test tomorrow. We need to be at 100 per cent again.” Jérôme Boateng, who likewise is returning to his home city, has a similar view: “They’re very compact, strong in the tackle, aggressive, but obviously we now want to get back to winning ways.”

The same goes for the Berliners, who suffered their first defeat of the season against Werder Bremen on Tuesday. Anticipation for Friday’s showdown is huge in the capital, as shown by the fact the stadium is sold out. “We now have a game that you would call a highlight. There’ll be a full house at the Olympiastadion – we’ll try to enjoy the moment,” commented Pal Dardai. However, the Hertha coach will be without his first-choice goalkeeper. Rune Jarstein has been ruled out with a thigh injury, meaning former Bayern man Thomas Kraft is set to start in goal.