FC Bayern Munich will face FC Duren in the opening round of the DFB-Pokal.
Due to scheduling issues following the UEFA Champions League triumph, FC Bayern Munich’s opening round fixture of the DFB-Pokal was pushed back to October. On Thursday, Die Roten will face FC Duren in the rescheduled match. They will look to avoid a major upset in the first round as they begin their DFB-Pokal title defense.
Here are three things to watch ahead of Thursday’s Pokal game.
David vs. Goliath
Duren is a fifth division side who will be up against the reigning European champions. The odds are certainly not in their favor to advance to the second round of the competition. Bayern has had success against the lower division clubs in recent memory and is not a club who often falls to non-Bundesliga clubs in the DFB-Pokal. If Duren can somehow pull off the upset then it will be one of the more memorable victories in the club’s history.
New signings debut?
The usual starting XI for Bayern will likely look very different against Duren. With players returning from international duty, Hansi Flick will have to turn to his new signings in this match.
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This fixture provides the perfect opportunity to introduce Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting, Douglas Costa, Bouna Sarr, and Marc Roca into the team. There should be an opportunity for goalkeeper Alexander Nübel to make an appearance. Manuel Neuer played in both UEFA Nations League fixtures for Germany, and with a Bundesliga match against Arminia Bielefeld on Saturday, it’s likely he will be rested.
Thursday has the potential to be a very exciting match for Bayern as the new additions to the club get to showcase their quality. These new signings were brought in to improve Bayern’s depth and this is their first opportunity to shine for Die Roten.
More opportunities for young players
Flick has his young group of players available for this match. Jamal Musiala and Chris Richards should be among those selected to feature against Duren. Musiala is off to a great start this season and could very well be in the starting XI for this fixture.
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The youngster has already scored for the senior team this team. This match could offer the opportunity for him to get a second goal for the senior team. Richards has been a very good player for Bayern as well. The American registered an assist against Hertha Berlin and has impressed so far this season. He should be a player that sees minutes in this match.