Tense Bay­ern braced for Su­per Cup test

New Straits Times - - Sport -

BERLIN: Fol­low­ing five de­feats in six warm-up games and whis­tles from their own fans, Carlo Ancelotti’s Bay­ern Mu­nich have some­thing to prove at Borus­sia Dort­mund for the Ger­man Su­per Cup to­day.

As de­fend­ing Bun­desliga cham­pi­ons, Bay­ern face Ger­man Cup-win­ners Dort­mund at a sold­out Sig­nal Iduna Park with re­cent re­sults sug­gest­ing the Bavar­i­ans are far from ready for the an­nual pre-sea­son show­down.

“We have to win, this is an im­por­tant game for FC Bay­ern,” said French winger Franck Ribery de­fi­antly, but they have not been con­vinc­ing of late.

Bay­ern were booed at their own fans at the Al­lianz Arena in Wed­nes­day’s 2-0 de­feat to Napoli, a day af­ter their 3-0 trounc­ing in Mu­nich by Liver­pool, which left them last in their own pre-sea­son tour­na­ment.

Ger­many de­fender Mats Hum­mels said the Liver­pool de­feat was the worst he had “ever ex­pe­ri­enced with Bay­ern” while head coach Carlo Ancelotti replied “of course we are wor­ried” when asked if re­sults are a con­cern.

“There are a lot of points we need to work on, we aren’t 100 perc ent yet,” added Hum­mels.

The back-to-back de­feats in Mu­nich fol­lowed de­feats to AC Mi­lan and In­ter on their pre-sea­son tour of China and Sin­ga­pore, plus a penalty shoot-out de­feat to Arse­nal and a slen­der win over English cham­pi­ons Chelsea.

Bay­ern will not be at full strength in Dort­mund.

New sign­ing James Ro­driguez is out for the next few weeks with a ham­string in­jury and at­tack­ing mid­fielder Thi­ago Al­can­tara will miss the Su­per Cup game with a stom­ach mus­cle in­jury.

Af­ter Thomas Tuchel was sacked just days af­ter win­ning the Ger­man Cup fi­nal, Dort­mund new head coach Pe­ter Bosz faces his first real test at home.

“We’re mak­ing progress. I can see that we have a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of what is asked of the play­ers. That pleases me,” said the Dutch­man.

“We want to win the cup and will give our best in front of our own fans.” AFP

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