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Football | Germany

Bremen hoping Bayern suffer hangover

Bayern Munich host Werder Bremen on Saturday in the Bundesliga looking to extend their unbeaten run in all matches to 20 while their guests are hoping the Bavarians suffer a Champions League hangover.

With a 15-point lead, Bayern are running away with this season's title and 11th-placed Bremen last tasted victory at Munich's Allianz Arena back in September 2008.

Fresh from their impressive 3-1 Champions League win at Arsenal on Tuesday in the last 16, first-leg tie, Munich are on a roll and Werder midfielder Mehmet Ekici, who grew up in Munich, says they hope to catch Bayern cold.

"We want to play at their level, play aggressively and give our all," said the Turkey international.

"If we just pull back and let Bayern do their thing, then it will be very difficult. But if we are alert from the first second on and keep focused, then we could also take points from Munich."

Werder will have to work hard to breach Bayern's defence, which has leaked just seven goals in the league all season, while goalkeeper Manuel Neuer has had to save just one shot in the last 281 minutes of league action.

One factor in Bremen's favour is Bayern's German Cup quarterfinal next Wednesday at home to holders Borussia Dortmund.

That means on Saturday Dutch star Arjen Robben will play on the right wing with Mario Gomez likely to start as striker.

Both right-wing Thomas Mueller and striker Mario Mandzukic, who has scored seven goals in the last five games including the third at Arsenal, are being rested and are expected to start on the bench.

Bayern have not lost any of their last 10 competitive matches against Bremen with seven wins and three draws.

Bremen striker Nils Petersen, on loan from Bayern will be looking to show the Bavarians what they are missing having scored 11 goals in 22 games so far this season.

Second-placed Borussia Dortmund are at Moenchengladbach on Sunday having drubbed the hosts 5-0 in the corresponding fixture last September.

It was Monchengladbach's biggest loss this season, but also Lucien Favre's worst defeat as coach since taking charge in February 2011 as Marco Reus scored twice against his old club.

With both strikers Robert Lewandowski and Julien Schieber suspended, Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp is likely to start with Germany midfielder Mario Goetze up front.

Klopp has been training his team behind closed doors since Sunday and clearly has something up his sleeve ahead of his team's German Cup quarterfinal at Bayern on Wednesday in a repeat of last year's final.

Having earned a 1-1 draw at Istanbul's Galatasaray on Wednesday in the Champions League, Schalke 04 host Fortuna Duesseldorf on Saturday looking for only their second win in their last 13 games.

"I hope that the team has now figured out what they must do to be successful," said general manager Horst Heldt, with coach Jens Keller under pressure after just one win in his seven games since taking charge in December.

Heldt admitted the gloomy mood at Schalke would only lift "when we score on Saturday against Dusseldorf".


Freiburg v Eintracht Frankfurt


Bayern Munich v Werder Bremen
VfB Stuttgart v Nuremberg
Hanover 96 v Hamburg
Mainz 05 v VfL Wolfsburg
Augsburg v Hoffenheim
Schalke 04 v Fortuna Duesseldorf


Borussia M'gladbach v Borussia Dortmund
Greuther Fuerth v Bayer 04 Leverkusen


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