Bayern Munich will be looking to maintain their 100 per cent record when they take on Darmstadt at the Stadion am Bollenfalltor on Saturday afternoon.
The reigning champions have had some difficulties over the past few weeks, yet remain one of only two teams to have won all four Bundesliga games so far this campaign, Borussia Dortmund being the other one.
Thomas Muller has been Bayern’s main dangerman in the opening weeks of the new season with his six goals in four league appearances and he once more showed his class in the Champions League win over Olympiacos in midweek.
The Germany international scored twice to lead his team in the way and his first goal in particular was proof that everything Muller touches seems to turn into gold, with a failed cross ending up in the top corner.
“It feels nice when things are going well,” Muller commented modestly.
“I wanted to pass the ball to Lewy (Robert Lewandowski) with a sharp cross. When the ball was in the air I could see after five metres that it wouldn’t be a cross. Actually it was a dangerous shot into the far corner. It went in, it was a bit lucky – the ball just bobbled.
“I do my best in every game, but at the moment I’m enjoying a little luck as well.”
Pep Guardiola will once more be relying on Muller on Saturday, but the Spanish coach will possibly have to make do without the services of Robert Lewandowski due to injury after he limped off on Wednesday.
Furthermore, Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben remain unavailable as well, while Medhi Benatia and Holger Badstuber are still recovering.
Darmstadt, meanwhile, have few injury problems of note as head coach Dirk Schuster will pick from a near full strength squad.
“They’ve all reported fit,” the 47-year-old told reporters two days prior to the match .
Schuster is only without two long-term absentees, midfielder Yannick Stark (ankle) and back-up goalkeeper Patrick Platins (hamstring).
That won’t make Darmstadt’s challenge of getting a good result against FCB any less difficult, though.
They remain unbeaten so far this Bundesliga campaign, recording three draws before bagging the full three points against Bayer Leverkusen last weekend, but their record against Bayern gives little reason for optimism.
Darmstadt last took on Bayern in 1981-82, when the Munich side won 4-1 at home and 2-1 away. Darmstadt managed a draw on one of their other two encounters, yet they were beaten at home in May 1979, meaning they still await their first Bundesliga win over FCB.