Bayern Munich will turn their attention to cup competition this week as DFB Pokal returns on Wednesday. The Bavarian club will be travelling to Mainz in the round of 16 of the DFB Pokal. Bayern will be looking to get their first win of the season after enduring a difficult start to Ruckrunde in the Bundesliga.
Die Roten has been involved in three draws across eight days since Bundesliga resumed against RB Leipzig on January 20. The record Bundesliga champions are under immense pressure coming into the game against Mainz on Wednesday. Let us look at the team news and possible starting XI for the cup clash against Mainz.
Leon Goretzka has recovered from a minor muscle injury to be back in the squad against Mainz. The German midfielder is fit enough to start on Wednesday. Dayot Upamecano, Yann Sommer, and Joshua Kimmich have knocks, but they are expected to be part of the squad.
Sadio Mane started training with the ball on Tuesday. The game against Mainz comes too soon for him. Bouna Sarr has started training with his teammates, but it remains to be seen if he will be part of the squad tomorrow. Marcel Sabitzer is not available for selection as he is closing on a move to Manchester United on deadline day. New signing Joao Cancelo is available for selection after undergoing his first training session at Die Roten on Tuesday. Lucas Hernandez, Manuel Neuer, and Noussair Mazraoui are the long-term absentees for the Bavarian club.
Predicted Starting XI
Despite having a knock, Yann Sommer is expected to start against Mainz. Julian Nagelsmann confirmed in his press conference on Tuesday that Sommer should be fit enough to play. The Swiss goalkeeper will be hoping that the wait for the first clean sheet at Bayern will come to an end on Wednesday.
In the central defense, Nagelsmann may bring Benjamin Pavard in the team instead of Matthijs de Ligt. The Dutch defender has played all three games in 2023, so the German coach may look to rotate a bit on Wednesday. Dayot Upamecano will partner Pavard in central defense, while Joao Cancelo will make his debut in the right-back position. Alphonso Davies will start in the left-back position on Wednesday.
Nagelsmann is expected to bring Leon Goretzka back into the starting lineup. The German midfielder will pair up with Joshua Kimmich in the center of the park. Nagelsmann relied on the German midfield duo to help him get out of the crisis in September. He will be hoping for a similar outcome on Wednesday.
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Jamal Musiala looked very bright against Frankfurt, so he is expected to keep a place in the team. Leroy Sane and Serge Gnabry will occupy the flank on Wednesday. Sane will be looking to build on his good performance against Frankfurt. Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting will be leading the attack against Mainz.