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No Martínez or Boateng

Stay on track for the title

There was big disappointment for FC Bayern after Tuesday’s cruel Champions League exit at Real Madrid, but now it’s time to look ahead again as the Reds are back in action on Saturday at home to Mainz (15:30 CEST, live ticker and Webradio commentary). “We have a great opportunity to respond in a positive way,” commented Carlo Ancelotti on Friday ahead of the Matchday 30 fixture.

A positive response isn’t Ancelotti’s only aim. The Italian wants three points to move a step closer to the title. “We need to win the title as soon as possible,” demanded the 57 year-old. “We’re in a good position with a good lead,” added Ancelotti, who doesn’t see his side’s eight-point advantage over Leipzig as a reason to relax.

Hummels fit

“We need to win, we need to show our quality and with the backing of our fans we can do that,” promised Ancelotti, who will play his “best team” against the 05ers. The upcoming DFB Cup semi-final (Wednesday 20:45 CEST) will not affect his team selection. “We have enough time to recover before then.”

Manuel Neuer, who broke his foot in Madrid, won’t be available for selection so Sven Ulreich will start in goal. “That doesn’t change our tactics for the game in any way. I have complete trust in Sven, he’s a quality goalkeeper,” said Ancelotti, who will also be without Jérôme Boateng and Javi Martínez. The defensive duo have minor knocks but “will be fit to play against Dortmund”. Mats Hummels, meanwhile, has “trained without problems” and is fit for Saturday’s game along with the rest of the squad.

Mainz looking to give more than 100%

The team is well-placed to claim the three points, then. However Mainz also desperately need the points themselves. The visitors are currently 15th in the table and in danger of relegation. Martin Schmidt’s side will travel to Munich with renewed confidence, though, after ending their five-game winless run last weekend.

Mainz are looking for a performance similar to that against Hertha BSC in order to get something from their trip to Bavaria. “If we can go above our maximum level of performance, then we can start to dream,” said Schmidt, before adding: “If we’re not at 100% we have no chance.”