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Bundesliga Matchday 9
Mercedes-Benz Arena, Stuttgart
  • 20' Tanguy Coulibaly
VfB Stuttgart
1 : 3
FC Bayern Munich
  • 38' Kingsley Coman
  • 45'+1 Robert Lewandowski
  • 87' Douglas Costa de Souza
  • 20' Tanguy Coulibaly
  • 38' Kingsley Coman
  • 45'+1 Robert Lewandowski
  • 87' Douglas Costa de Souza
Tolisso and Pavard fit to play

'Continue on our way' - FCB face next challenge in Stuttgart

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The league leaders visit the newcomers! On Saturday afternoon (follow the action on from 9:30 am ET with our live text commentary and free web radio), FC Bayern travel to VfB Stuttgart, who are looking to re-establish themselves in the German top flight after a year of absence. Read all the important information about the latest edition of this southern derby in our preview.

The situation for FC Bayern

After successfully qualifying for the last 16 in the Champions League during the week, Bayern can now fully focus on the Bundesliga. However, this is by no means a breather in the tightly-packed programme before the end of the year. "The rhythm continues. We want to play, and win, and continue on our way," said Hansi Flick, noting the large number of games, "but winning the games, that's key." The record champions are aiming for victory in Stuttgart to keep the competition in the table at bay. After the draw against Bremen (1-1) a week ago, the lead over second and third place is only one point - the Reds aim to avoid any more dropped points. "We have to get a grip on the things we don't do well," demanded the 55-year-old, promising "to provide solutions for the players in the difficult game in Stuttgart".

Opponents VfB Stuttgart

Eighth in the table, the promoted side have dealt well with the leap to Bundesliga level so far. The Swabians fell to their only defeat of the season on Matchday 1 in a 3-2 loss against SC Freiburg. Since then, Pellegrino Matarazzo's team are undefeated in the Bundesliga (two wins, five draws) and well on the way to securing their league status for next sesason. The VfB coach believes in his team's chances ahead of the duel with the record champions, but remains realistic: "We want to use the small chance of scoring against Bayern as best we can," explained the 42-year-old. "If we can play freely with the feeling of not losing, we may have a small chance." Stuttgart will have to work on their home weakness: VfB have picked up only three of their eleven points at home this season.

Personnel, tactics and more: the press conference with Hansi Flick before the game in Stuttgart:

Team news

Bayern can rely on the services of French world champions Corentin Tolisso and Benjamin Pavard for the visit to the Ländle region, both of whom are ready to play again after minor injuries, as confirmed by Flick. However, the Bayern coach left it open whether Niklas Süle would play. The Germany international still has a training deficit and needs "the necessary fitness" to be able to fully exploit his potential. The record champions are definitely without Joshua Kimmich (surgery on the external meniscus) and Alphonso Davies (training after ankle injury).

Stuttgart have to cope with the absence of their best attacker Nicolas Gonzalez (three goals), who, according to Matarazzo, is "not an option" after a small partial tear in the inner ligament in his left knee. However, Konstantinos Mavropanos, Clinton Mola and Roberto Massimo are back in training and are candidates for the squad against FCB.

Corentin Tolisso (left) and Benjamin Pavard (right) have reported fit in time for the game against Stuttgart and with a bit of luck could celebrate together again.

View from the dugout

Hansi Flick: "Stuttgart are a very strong team with fast players. They're up there with the most goals on the counterattack. They're rightly in a good position. It's impressive how they play their game: very courageously and consistently. It will definitely be a difficult game for us."

Pellegrino Matarazzo (VfB Stuttgart coach): "We're meeting a team that is one of the best, if not the best in the world. It seemed like they cruised through the Champions League group stage. We're just looking forward to the game, showing our strengths and trying to measure up against them. It's important we fight, invest everything and play our best football possible, then in the end we'll see where we stand."

For more important info about the away game in Stuttgart, read the facts and figures about the game here: