Heynckes: Schalke toughest test so far for Bayern Munich

Bayern Munich coach Jupp Heynckes has warned his team that this Saturday’s clash against Schalke will be their toughest test so far this season.

Die Roten complemented this season’s 100 per cent domestic record with a 2-1 Champions League victory at home to Valencia in midweek, with Toni Kroos particularly excelling during the game.

Meanwhile, the Royal Blues kicked off their own Champions League campaign with a 2-1 away win at Olympiakos and have seven points from a possible nine in the Bundesliga. This has caused the 67-year-old Bayern trainer to declare this weekend’s clash as “the toughest task we’ve undertaken so far”.

However, although the Bayern coach has talked up the match, he fully expects his side to claim the three points in Gelsenkirchen and continue their great start to the season.

“We’re nicely in the groove, as they say,” he told a press conference.

“I’m confident we’ll keep up the good work on Saturday. We were authoritative and imposed ourselves on the game against Valencia. We want to do it again on Saturday,” he explained.

There is some cause for concern, though, as Franck Ribery is still an injury doubt with the French international still not completely recovered from a strain that he picked up midweek against Valencia.

Whether the talented winger makes the game or not, former Schalke keeper and current Bayern number one, Manuel Neuer, has also paid testament to the quality of his ex-club.

“It’s a clash between equals. Taking all three points will be very difficult,” he said.

And for Schalke, the team news is rather mixed. Rafinha returns to the squad for the first time this season, although the Ruhr club may be without Jermaine Jones and Klass-Jan Huntelaar who both picked up injuries midweek.

Heynckes: Schalke toughest test so far Bayern Munich

Bayern Munich coach Jupp Heynckes has warned his team that this Saturday’s clash against Schalke will be their toughest test so far this season.

Die Roten complemented this season’s 100 per cent domestic record with a 2-1 Champions League victory at home to Valencia in midweek, with Toni Kroos particularly excelling during the game.

Meanwhile, the Royal Blues kicked off their own Champions League campaign with a 2-1 away win at Olympiakos and have seven points from a possible nine in the Bundesliga. This has caused the 67-year-old Bayern trainer to declare this weekend’s clash as “the toughest task we’ve undertaken so far”.

However, although the Bayern coach has talked up the match, he fully expects his side to claim the three points in Gelsenkirchen and continue their great start to the season.

“We’re nicely in the groove, as they say,” he told a press conference.

“I’m confident we’ll keep up the good work on Saturday. We were authoritative and imposed ourselves on the game against Valencia. We want to do it again on Saturday,” he explained.

There is some cause for concern, though, as Franck Ribery is still an injury doubt with the French international still not completely recovered from a strain that he picked up midweek against Valencia.

Whether the talented winger makes the game or not, former Schalke keeper and current Bayern number one, Manuel Neuer, has also paid testament to the quality of his ex-club.

“It’s a clash between equals. Taking all three points will be very difficult,” he said.

And for Schalke, the team news is rather mixed. Rafinha returns to the squad for the first time this season, although the Ruhr club may be without Jermaine Jones and Klass-Jan Huntelaar who both picked up injuries midweek.

Luiz Gustavo: Schalke game will not be easy for Bayern Munich

EXCLUSIVE
By Maximilian Bensinger

Bayern Munich midfielder Luiz Gustavo is eagerly anticipating Saturday’s Bundesliga match away to Schalke, and expects a difficult game at the Veltins Arena.

The 25-year-old feels that the Bavarians will have to be on top of their game if they are to take the full three points in Gelsenkirchen, and has urged his team-mates not to underestimate the Konigsblauen.

“Of course, we want to win against Schalke. We know that it will not be easy, though. We have to give our all,” Luiz Gustavo stated to Goal.com.

“Schalke are always challenging for the title or at least a Champions League place. Matches versus Schalke are always great games.

“I do not know if I will feature from the start. It’s only normal that we have a rotation system. We had a similar system last year.”

The holding midfielder then briefly looked back at Bayern’s 2-1 Champions League win over Valencia in midweek.

“We made a very good start to the game, but faded a bit in the closing 20 minutes of the match. We got a bit tired, and had some difficulties. We thus allowed Valencia back in the game,” he refelcted.

Bayern’s next Champions League match takes place on October 2, away to BATE Borisov.

Stevens: Schalke have no reason to be afraid of Bayern

Schalke coach Huub Stevens is eagerly anticipating this weekend’s Bundesliga match at home against table toppers Bayern Munich, and is confident the Konigsblauen can get a positive result.

The Dutchman is high on confidence following the Gelsenkirchen side’s good start to the 2012-13 campaign, and feels they have no reasons to fear Bayern.

“Confidence alone isn’t enough to beat Bayern. Our results in the first few games have been good but we still have some inconsistencies in our play,” Stevens was quoted as saying on the official Schalke website.

“Bayern are playing a different kind of football compared to last season. They press much more and switch the play faster.

“But we have to focus on our own qualities rather than worrying about our opponents. We have to play with courage and belief. We’ve no reason to be afraid of Bayern. Fear is a bad counsellor.”

Saturday’s encounter is scheduled to kick off at 13:30 UTC.

Schalke – Bayern Munich Preview: The fierce rivals lock horns having both posted unbeaten starts


It may lack the box office draw of El Clasico or the traditional allure of the Milan derby, but there can be no doubting the scale of the rivalry between Schalke and Bayern Munich.

On Saturday afternoon the pair do battle in Gelsenkirchen, with both sides looking to end one another’s unbeaten start to the campaign.

The Bavarians sit at the top of the Bundesliga and boast a 100 per cent record from their opening three games, while die Konigsblauen reside in fourth spot – just two points behind their fierce rivals.

If last season’s clashes between the pair are anything to go by then the hosts hold the upper hand, having emerged 2-0 victors on both occasions, with goalkeeper Manuel Neuer – who traded Schalke for Bayern 15 months ago – yet to concede against his former employers.

But, fresh off the back of a fine 2-1 Champions League win at Olympiakos in midweek – the same scoreline by which Bayern saw off Valencia on Wednesday evening – Huub Stevens’ charges will head into the game full of confidence.

Timo Hildebrand looks to be the only notable absentee from the Schalke squad, with Jermaine Jones a slight doubt, while Bayern will check on the fitness of Franck Ribery after he limped off at half-time on Wednesday evening. Mario Gomez remains sidelined with an ankle injury.

  • Schalke striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar became the first Dutchman to top the Bundesliga goalscoring charts last season, with a haul of 29 goals.

  • Die Konigsblauen last recorded a win over Bayern in March 2011, when they triumphed 1-0 at the Allianz Arena in the DFB-Pokal. Former striker Raul netted the only goal of the game.

  • Schalke have won four and drawn one of their opening five contests in all competitions this season.