Created on 2017-01-19 at 15:00 PM by Redaktion
The Bavarians are taking plenty of warm clothing with them for the first competitive fixture after the winter break. "It's cold today, it'll be cold tomorrow. It's cold for us, but also for Freiburg," Carlo Ancelotti commented on the below-zero temperatures currently prevailing in Germany, stressing that there are no advantages for either side in the Bundesliga restart on Friday (Live in English from 20.30 CET on our live ticker and FCBayern.tv Web Radio). The temperatures are no issue for the men from Munich as they "can hardly wait to be in competitive action again, with points at stake. It's about making progress in do-or-die matches," according to Philipp Lahm, who stressed that the German record champions are fired up and raring to go.
30 days after the 3-0 victory over Leipzig, including a 17-day preparation period with a training camp and three successful dress rehearsals, the Bavarians aim to pick up where they left off. "We played very well against Leipzig. Tomorrow we want to play just as well again," said Ancelotti. Matchday 17 usually marks the so-called autumn championship, the unofficial accolade awarded to the team at the top during the winter break. The midpoint of the season is late this term, but the German record champions want to top the table after the matchday nonetheless, and the prospects are good in view of a three-point edge and a better goal difference compared to pursuers Leipzig.
Vidal and Coman ready
However, a good start to the second half of the season is more important than virtual silverware. The Bavarians know "a difficult match with high intensity" awaits them against the side lying eighth in the table. "Freiburg are a good team," commented Ancelotti, "but I'm satisfied with the break. The team have worked out very well, they're in good condition both mentally and physically. We've worked hard to be ready for tomorrow. I have a good feeling."
The FCB head coach has an almost complete squad at his disposal. Thiago and Jérôme Boateng are the only players sidelined with injury. Ancelotti can count on Arturo Vidal, who sustained bruised ribs in the Telekom Cup last weekend: "I think he can play tomorrow. And Kingsley Coman is ready for tomorrow too." The Frenchman is expected to be in the squad for the first time after an 11-week injury lay-off.
Pre-match news from Freiburg
Unavailable: Marc-Oliver Kempf (meniscus surgery), Georg Niedermeier (back problem), Caglar Söyüncü (thigh problem)
Coach Christian Streich: "The times Bayern underestimated their opponents are long gone. If Bayern turn in a perfect display we have to assume we'll lose. But then again, maybe they won't play perfectly."