Chance for Bayern, Bayer to go to the top

26th August 2004, Comments 0 comments

27 August 2004 , HAMBURG - Champions League participants Bayer Leverkusen and Bayern Munich have a chance on Saturday to take over the leadership in the Bundesliga - at least for a day. Defending champions Werder Bremen, who are the only club with maximum points from two games, are only playing against Wolfsburg on Sunday, which gives the two challengers, who clash in Leverkusen a chance to go to the top. Bayer suffered an embarrassing 2-1 defeat at Banik Ostrava in the Champions League qualifiers on Wedne

27 August 2004

HAMBURG - Champions League participants Bayer Leverkusen and Bayern Munich have a chance on Saturday to take over the leadership in the Bundesliga - at least for a day.

Defending champions Werder Bremen, who are the only club with maximum points from two games, are only playing against Wolfsburg on Sunday, which gives the two challengers, who clash in Leverkusen a chance to go to the top.

Bayer suffered an embarrassing 2-1 defeat at Banik Ostrava in the Champions League qualifiers on Wednesday, but still easily advanced to the group phase of the lucrative competition 6-2 on aggregate.

Munich had an even more disastrous run-up to the league game, when they lost a friendly against fifth division Olympia Laupheim 2-0.

Coach Felix Magath is expected to start Paraguayan striker Roque Santa Cruz, who scored four goals in Bayern's first round cup victory on the weekend, upfront.

"We know that he is a talented player, but he has not been able to put that into practise often enough," Magath said, but added: "If I have a striker like that, then he will of course play."

Stuttgart and Nuremberg, who like Leverkusen and Munich have four points from their two games, take on the two clubs that are still pointless after their opening two games.

Second-placed Stuttgart are away to second-from-bottom Kaiserslautern, while Nuremberg travel to SV Hamburg, who not only are bottom of the log, but also gave away a two-goal lead against a third division club in the cup last weekend and were knocked out.

The only other club on four points, SC Freiburg, are at home to Borussia Moenchengladbach, who also were knocked out of the cup by a third division club.

German international Christian Ziege, who was sent off in the cup game against the Bayern Munich reserve side, said that he was optimistic about Gladbach's season.

"There is something developing here at the club. We want to pick up the 40 points we need to stay in the league as soon as possible and then see what else we can achieve. That is the task of the team."

League rookies Mainz 05, who came from behind to register their first league victory against Hamburg, travel to Hertha Berlin, who were hoping to challenge for the title, but have only two points from two draws and are looking for their first win against the newcomers.

Arminia Bielefeld, who have played only one game so far, are at home against Bochum on Saturday. Both clubs are still looking for their first victories of the season.

Also on Saturday, Schalke take on Hansa Rostock, while former Champions League winners Dortmund play against Hanover 96 on Sunday.

DPA

Subject: German news
 

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