Saturday afternoon will see the first German Klassiker of the season as Bundesliga heavyweights Bayern Munich host Borussia Dortmund at the Allianz Arena in a game which could have big implications in the title race.
Bayern recently parted ways with manager Niko Kovac, leaving Hans-Dieter Flick in charge as interim manager. That sacking came after the heavy 5-1 defeat at Eintracht Frankfurt, with a red card for Jérôme Boateng compounding Bayern's misery and spelling the end for Kovac.
They returned to winning ways in the Champions League on Wednesday night as they overcame a tough Olympiacos side by two goals to nil, Robert Lewandowski scoring yet again alongside Ivan Perisic's late effort.
Borussia Dortmund can return to the top of the Bundesliga table if results go their way, and will be looking to exact revenge for the last trip to the Allianz when they were well and truly beaten by a rampant Bayern side.
In their last Bundesliga game, Lucien Favre's side ran out 3-0 victors over Wolfsburg, while they also overhauled a two goal deficit in the 3-2 victory over Internazionale in the Champions League on Tuesday night.
Where to Watch
|When Is Kick Off?||Saturday 9 November|
|What Time Is Kick Off?||17:30 (GMT)|
|Where Is it Played?||Allianz Arena|
|TV Channel/Live Stream?||BT Sport 1 HD|
Bayern Munich have a few injuries to contend with for Saturday's fixture, with centre back pairing Niklas Süle (cruciate ligament rupture) and Lucas Hernandez (ankle) both sidelined with injuries. Boateng is suspended after picking up a red card against Frankfurt.
Flick will most likely continue with Javi Martinez and David Alaba in central defence, with Alphonso Davies and Benjamin Pavard in the full back roles.
Favre will not be able to call on Marcel Schmelzer, as the 31-year-old recovers from a muscle strain that has kept him sidelined since 21 October.
Marco Reus remains doubtful after missing the Inter game with an ankle problem, while Jadon Sancho's thigh muscle tear will be assessed closer to the game.
|Bayern Munich||Neuer; Pavard, Alaba, Martinez, Davies; Kimmich, Tolisso; Gnabry, Coutinho, Coman; Lewandowski.|
|Borussia Dortmund||Burki; Piszczek, Hummels, Akanji, Schulz; Witsel, Delaney; Hakimi, Brandt, Hazard; Alcacer.|
Head to Head Record
There have been 115 meetings between Bayern and Dortmund, with Bayern claiming 55 wins to Dortmund's 31, with 29 draws shared. Bayern have scored 217 goals compared to Dortmund's 145.
The last six meetings between the two sides has produced 25 goals, with Bayern edging proceedings with an aggregate score of 18-7, winning four of the last six games in all competitions.
Die Roten have endured a poor spell of late, despite sitting just four points behind league leaders Borussia Mönchengladbach. Whilst Bayern have enjoyed some great results in Europe, such as the 7-2 humiliation of Tottenham, their league form was inevitably the downfall of Kovac.
Despite this, Bayern have only lost one in their last six - the now infamous 5-1 defeat at Frankfurt - and have enjoyed October wins over Union Berlin, Bochum and twice against Greek outfit Olympiacos.
OFFICIAL: Bayern Munich have parted company with head coach Niko Kovač following the side's 5-1 defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt this weekend. pic.twitter.com/tocV5qI84O— Squawka News (@SquawkaNews) November 3, 2019
Dortmund are having a stellar season thus far and currently sit second in the Bundesliga, just two points behind Gladbach. Der BVB have only lost once in their last 13 matches in all competitions, coming in a 2-0 away defeat to Inter in the Champions League.
Dortmund have won their last three fixtures on the bounce, scoring eight and conceding three in that time, although with Bayern's talisman Lewandowski in fine goalscoring form, BVB will have to step up their defensive stability.
Here's how both sides have fared in their last five fixtures.
|Bayern Munich||Borussia Dortmund|
|Bayern Munich 2-0 Olympiacos (06/11)||Borussia Dortmund 3-2 Inter (05/11)|
|Eintracht Frankfurt 5-1 Bayern Munich (02/11)||Borussia Dortmund 3-0 Wolfsburg (02/11)|
|Bochum 1-2 Bayern Munich (29/10)||Borussia Dortmund 2-1 Gladbach (30/10)|
|Bayern Munich 2-1 Union Berlin (26/10)||Schalke 0-0 Borussia Dortmund (26/10)|
|Olympiacos 2-3 Bayern Munich (22/10)||Inter 2-0 Borussia Dortmund (23/10)|
Saturday's Klassiker should be a cracking game of football with both sides looking to secure bragging rights over their rivals and move up the table. With both teams scoring for fun, there should be a fair few goals shared between the two sides on Saturday afternoon.
Bayern exhibited some slick attacking football in midweek against Olympiacos, and with the home advantage, the Bavarian club should be able to conquer Dortmund and leapfrog them in the Bundesliga.
Whilst Dortmund will most certainly look to exploit Bayern's crippled defence, the depth in squad that Flick possesses should be enough to overcome a free flowing Dortmund side in what could be an early title-decider.