Saturday’s clash between Bayern Munich and Bochum is a meeting that pits two teams at opposite ends of the table together. Julian Nagelsmann’s Bayern will be looking to extend their one point lead at the top of the Bundesliga, whilst Bochum sit just three points above the relegation playoff after impressing against Hoffenheim last weekend.
With RB Leipzig (4th) hosting Union Berlin (2nd) at the same time, and Borussia Dortmund (3rd) travelling to Werder Bremen, Bayern will be hoping for a strong performance to remain Bundesliga leaders come Saturday evening.
However, Bayern Munich will be without Joshua Kimmich, who is suspended after accumulating five yellow cards, and Nagelsmann has already confirmed that Leon Goretzka will play as the No. 6. Ryan Gravenberch is also missing through injury, but we can expect a strong XI from the Rekordmeister.
As for Bochum, Letsch has a huge task on his hands to keep Bochum in the Bundesliga but a 5-2 win against relegation rivals last weekend will give the VfL players a huge morale boost. However, Bochum have struggled away from home this season, losing nine of their ten away games. The reverse fixture finished 7-0 to Bayern Munich and despite Manuel Neuer, Joshua Kimmich and Sadio Mané absent, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see a similar scoreline.
Bochum may take some comfort knowing that Bayern Munich drew their three opening games of 2023, but they beat Wolfsburg 4-2 last weekend without really trying. Although playing away, we can expect Bochum to press. No team has pressed more than VfL (207) since Letsch was appointed, not even Bayern (196).
Quite remarkably Kingsley Coman has been in excellent form of late which could see him oust Serge Gnabry, who isn’t in Bayern’s good books after visiting the Paris Fashion Week. Coman scored a brace against Wolfsburg and has been involved in six goals this season. Together with Jamal Musiala, who continues to excel, Bayern are clinical in attack.
GGFN | Daniel Pinder