Bayern eye next goal romp at Hamburg

Friday October 20 2017

Bayern Munich's defender Jerome Boateng (left) and Celtic's Scottish striker Leigh Griffiths vie for the ball during their Champions League group B match in Munich, southern Germany, on October 18, 2017. PHOTO | CHRISTOF STACHE |

Bayern Munich's defender Jerome Boateng (left) and Celtic's Scottish striker Leigh Griffiths vie for the ball during their Champions League group B match in Munich, southern Germany, on October 18, 2017. PHOTO | CHRISTOF STACHE |  AFP

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BERLIN

Bayern Munich head to strugglers Hamburg on Saturday with the defending Bundesliga champions looking to improve their finishing and keep the goals flowing under new coach Jupp Heynckes.

Bayern have scored eight times without reply in their two games since Heynckes, 72, replaced Carlo Ancelotti a fortnight ago.

Last weekend's 5-0 thrashing of Freiburg was followed up by a 3-0 win against Celtic on Wednesday in the Champions League.

League leaders Borussia Dortmund, two points clear of Bayern, are at Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday.

Peter Bosz's Dortmund need a win after losing 3-2 at home to RB Leipzig last Saturday before struggling to a 1-1 draw at APOEL in the Champions League on Tuesday.

Third-placed RB Leipzig host Stuttgart on the back of three wins as they prepare for next week's double header against Bayern.

Here are four things to look out for in the Bundesliga this weekend:

Heynckes dampens rout talk

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Bayern head north to Hamburg, who are winless in their last six games, with another big win on the cards.

When the teams last met in February, Robert Lewandowski scored a hat-trick as Hamburg were smashed 8-0 at the Allianz Arena.

Bayern have won all of the last six meetings and Hamburg, 15th in the table, last beat the Bavarians eight years ago.

Nevertheless, Heynckes played down any talk of another goal bonanza after the win against Celtic, when Bayern wasted a string of chances.

"We have to show some respect for the opponent, we missed a lot of chances, which is cause for concern," said Heynckes.

Heynckes hinted there will be some rotation in Hamburg after James Rodriguez, Corentin Tolisso and Arturo Vidal started on the bench against Celtic.

Burki under pressure

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Dortmund host Frankfurt on Saturday with question marks over goalkeeper Roman Burki.

The shot-stopper's error allowed APOEL to take a shock lead in Tuesday's 1-1 draw.

The result left Dortmund six points behind Real Madird and Tottenham Hotspur and facing a Champions League exit before the knock-out stages.

"He made an error, he knows that himself, but has often helped the team and now they have to be there for him," said coach Peter Bosz.

Dortmund need to beat Frankfurt after losing 3-2 at home to Leipzig last weekend before drawing in Nicosia.

They have problems at centre-back with Sokratis Papastathopoulos suspended after his red card against Leipizg while Omer Toprak has a thigh injury.

Payback for Pizarro

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Despite him scoring 144 goals in 271 appearances, second-from-bottom Werder Bremen opted not to extend the contract of 39-year-old Claudio Pizarro for this season.

The veteran Peru hot-shot was snapped up by bottom side Cologne and could return to haunt Bremen when the clubs meet on Sunday.

"I miss the (Bremen) boys, there were good colleagues and friends, but football goes on," said Pizarro.

"On Sunday, I won't miss Bremen, but Werder will always be in my heart."

Pizarro will not celebrate if he scores his first Cologne goal against Bremen.

"I don't celebrate against an old club, simply out of respect for the fans and the people," he added.

Keita-Kampl double act

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Third-placed Leipizg warm up for next week's double-header against Bayern Munich by hosting Stuttgart with coach Ralph Hasenhuettl raving about Kevin Kampl and Liverpool-bound Naby Keita.

The pair forged a defensive midfield partnership in the 3-2 wins over Dortmund last weekend and Porto on Tuesday in the Champions League.

"With Keita and Kampl, we're water-tight in midfield," said Hasenhuettl.

"It's a footballing sight for sore eyes to see them together."

Hasenhuettl is set to rest a few stars before facing Bayern on Wednesday at home in the German Cup, then away in the league a week next Saturday.

Fixtures (all times 4.30pm EAT unless stated)

Friday

Schalke 04 v Cologne (9.30pm)

Saturday

RB Leipzig v VfB Stuttgart, Borussia Moenchengladbach v Bayer Leverkusen, Eintracht Frankfurt v Borussia Dortmund, Augsburg v Hanover 96, Hamburg v Bayern Munich (7.30pm)

Sunday

Cologne v Werder Bremen (2.30pm), Freiburg v Hertha Berlin, Wolfsburg v Hoffenheim (7pm)