Bayern Munich's Thiago Alcantara and Mario Gotze celebrate a goal against Manchester City, December 10. Reuters
Bayern Munich will still be seething after the surprise defeat at the hands of Manchester City. A backlash can be expected and the unfortunate side to suffer the consequences could be Hamburg when the two sides meet at the Allianz Arena on Saturday.
The German champions, despite losing 3-2 to City, still progressed to the knockout stages of the Champions League as group winners, and Pep Guardiola's men will now turn their attentions towards the Bundesliga, a league they are dominating, which sees them four points clear of second-placed Bayer Leverkusen, and ten ahead of Borussia Dortmund.
Guardiola asked his team to come away with all three points from their final home game before the winter break, with Bayern set to participate in the Club World Cup on Morocco starting Tuesday.
"The season doesn't end in November or December," the former Barcelona player and manager said. "Tomorrow [Saturday] is our last home game and we have to get the three points for our domestic ambitions and for our preparations for Morocco.
"We started well [against City], but dropped off a bit in the final 20 minutes. Sometimes, it's easier to maintain your concentration following a defeat. I'm curious to see our reaction after the City game, but I'm hoping for the best."
Hamburg, 13th in the Bundesliga table after picking up 16 points from 15 matches, will be wary of facing a charged-up Bayern side, who thumped Werder Bremen 7-0 in their last league outing and who have won more matches (55) and scored more goals (200) against Hamburg than any other Bundesliga club.
"I think they'll react in a professional manner," Hamburg manager Bert Van Marwijk said. "They are one of the best teams -- perhaps the best -- in the world at the moment. They won't allow one defeat to knock them off their stride."
"The likelihood of Bayern losing twice in a row is very small, but we have nothing to lose," midfielder Tolgay Arslan added.
Team news: Bayern Munich: Guardiola has no new injury worries, with Arjen Robben, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Holger Badstuber still sidelined. Jerome Boateng, who signed a new contract on Wednesday, however, will miss the Hamburg match through suspension, with Belgian Daniel Van Buyten expected to come in the German international defender's place.
Hamburg: Van Marwijk welcomes back influential playmaker Rafael Van Der Vaart after the Dutchman missed the 1-0 loss to Augsburg due to personal reasons, with defender Zhi Gin Lam also expected to be available. Goalkeeper Rene Adler, though, is ruled out with an ankle problem.
Where to Watch Live
The game is scheduled for an 8pm IST start with live coverage on Neo Prime in India. There is no official live streaming option available in the country. To catch the action via live streaming in Latin America courtesy ESPN, click HERE.
Expected lineups: Bayern Munich: Neuer; Lahm, Van Buyten, Dante, Alaba; Martinez, Thiago, Kroos; Gotze, Muller, Ribery.
Hamburg: Drobny; Mancienne, Tah, Djourou, Jansen; Rincon, Badelj, Arslan, Calhanoglu; Van Der Vaart; Lasogga.
Prediction: 4-0 to Bayern Munich
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