A resurgent Bayern Munich travel to Hertha BSC this Sunday looking for their fourth straight Bundesliga win as they return to league action following the winter break.
The hosts sit 12th in the table and are unbeaten in their last four league games under new head coach Jurgen Klinsmann. However, they are still only four points above the relegation play-off spot and will want to pick up more points here to edge them closer to safety.
Meanwhile, Der Roten are third in the league having won their last three under Hans-Dieter Flick as they look to defend their title. They are now back in contention for the title and sit only four points off first-placed RB Leipzig.
This is the first game week for all German sides following the winter break and it will be interesting to see whether there is a bit of rust for the teams to dust off.
Where to Watch
|When Is Kick Off?||Sunday 19th January|
|What Time Is Kick Off?||14:30 (GMT)|
|Where Is It Being Played?||Olympiastadion Berlin|
|TV Channel/Live Stream?||BT Sport ESPN|
Klinsmann has one serious injury to deal with coming off the winter break as defensive midfielder Arne Maier suffered a knee injury during the time away and is out for the foreseeable future.
Hertha signed Santiago Ascacibar from Stuttgart during the window and the Argentinian is likely to make his debut in this clash.
On the other side, Flick has a slew of injuries to contend with. Star man Robert Lewandowski had groin surgery over the break but Bayern are hopeful he'll return, while Serge Gnabry is a doubt having picked an Achilles injury.
This has added to the injury list at Bayern with Niklas Sule and Lucas Hernandez both out long-term, as well as Kingsley Coman and Javi Martinez, who picked up injuries prior to the break.
Joshua Kimmich is also suspended for the game.
|Hertha BSC||Jarstein; Klunter, Boyata, Rekik, Plattenhardt; Ascacibar; Lukebakio, Grujic, Darida, Dilrosun; Selke|
|Bayern Munich||Neuer; Pavard, Boateng, Alaba, Davies; Thiago, Goretzka; Müller, Coutinho, Perisic; Lewandowski|
Unsurprisingly, Bayern have had the much better of this fixture having won 18 of the 26 games played between the two sides. Hertha have only won two while another 6 ended all square.
Hertha's last win against this weekend's visitors came in September 2018 at the Olympiastadion Berlin as they won 2-0 thanks to goals from Vedad Ibisevic and Ondej Duda.
The return fixture was the opening game of the season when Hertha managed to secure an impressive point at the Allianz Arena with a 2-2 draw.
Prior to the winter break, Hertha had witnessed a revival under new head coach Klinsmann. They are unbeaten in four in the Bundesliga, winning twice and drawing twice.
This run included a huge 1-0 away win at Bayer Leverkusen while they were also able to hold high-flying Borussia Monchengladbach to a goalless draw.
Bayern have also witnessed an upturn in form under a new head coach with Flick guiding his team to three consecutive league wins to put them back in title contention.
The Bundesliga Champions comfortably beat Werder Bremen, Freiburg and Wolfsburg prior to the winter break to climb up the league table. Before that they'd lost back to back Bundesliga games to Leverkusen and Monchengladbach.
Here are both side's last five results.
|Hertha BSC||Bayern Munich|
|Hertha BSC 0-0 Monchengladbach (21/12)||Bayern Munich 2-0 Wolfsburg (21/12)|
|Leverkusen 0-1 Hertha BSC (18/12)||Freiburg 1-3 Bayern Munich (18/12)|
|Hertha BSC 1-0 Freiburg (14/12)||Bayern Munich 6-1 Werder Bremen (14/12)|
|Eintracht Frankfurt 2-2 Hertha BSC (6/12)||Bayern Munich 3-1 Tottenham (11/12)|
|Hertha BSC 1-2 Borussia Dortmund (30/11)||Monchengladbach 2-1 Bayern Munich (7/12)|
This will not be an easy game for the reigning Champions, with Hertha going through a mini-revival under Klinsmann.
Add to that the string of injuries that Flick will have to deal with and it will make for an interesting affair at the Olympiastadion Berlin.
However, Bayern seem to have got their swagger and their confidence back. With Lewandowski hopefully fit, they should be able to see off their hosts - just about.
Prediction: Hertha BSC 1-2 Bayern Munich