Created on 2018-04-13 at 18:00 PM by Redaktion
Matches between FC Bayern and Borussia Mönchengladbach are among the great classics in German football. On Saturday the two clubs face off for the 100th time in the Bundesliga (Live in English from 18.30 CEST on our exclusive fcbayern.com ticker). The German record champions have only contested more Bundesliga matches against Hamburger SV (106) and Werder Bremen (104). Saturday's match will be special for Jupp Heynckes as both clubs have a place in his heart.
"I had beautiful years at Borussia, and I've been a decisive player in the club's history," recalled Heynckes on the eve of the match, so his "very last match" against Mönchengladbach is "special of course." Despite his ties he has "big ambitions to win the match," stressed Heynckes. Bayern "won't ease off in the league" after sealing the championship title.
Heynckes might make a number of changes to the team that saw off Sevilla in the Champions League. Despite some knocks taken in the energy-sapping quarter-final return leg, he has all players at his disposal. Only Arjen Robben is rated doubtful with a bruised knee. "I have to see whether he can play tomorrow. If so he'll start," announced Heynckes.
Alaba to return, Vidal misses out
David Alaba is set to return to the squad after recovering from a back problem. The left back has "trained well" over the last few days: "If there's no negative reaction he'll play tomorrow." Heynckes will have to make do without Manuel Neuer, Kingsley Coman and Arturo Vidal, who is still "recovering" and set to resume the full squad programme on Sunday.
Having sealed their sixth championship title in a row and progressed to the Champions League semi-finals, the atmosphere at Bayern is "very good at the moment," reported Jérôme Boateng. The centre-back demanded that Bayern stay "hungry. We should make sure we keep going and play at a high level." Regarding Tuesday's DFB Cup semi-final away to Bayer Leverkusen it is "important to be successful and play well on Saturday."
While Saturday's match is a dress rehearsal for the meeting with Leverkusen, crucial points in the fight for the Europa League spots are at stake for the men from the Lower Rhine. The Foals have gone unbeaten in three matches, lying seventh in the table. They have 40 points, six short of RB Leipzig. Points in Munich would mean Gladbach keep pace. However, Borussia have only won three of their 49 matches in Munich.
"Basically we have nothing to lose," a relaxed Dieter Hecking said in the build-up to the match. His team might make it a special occasion "if they take something away," said the Gladbach head coach, who has to make do without two important players. Captain Lars Stindl will serve a one-match ban, whereas Patrick Herrmann sustained an ankle injury in training.