Bayern Munich head coach Jupp Heynckes is optimistic ahead of his side’s trip to Hamburg in the Bundesliga on Saturday.
The Bundesliga giants saw their perfect record spoiled in a 2-1 defeat against Bayer Leverkusen last Sunday, a setback that ended a run of eight successive wins.
They will need to be on their guard at Hamburg, who – with three wins in their past four league matches – are on the rise.
“First of all, you have to say that HSV are improving,” Heynckes said.
“The team won the last away match 1-0 at Augsburg, they’ve established themselves in the top part of the table and they are a difficult opponent at home.
“As for us, I think that we’re looking good although we lost against Leverkusen last time out. So I’m going to Hamburg very optimistic.”
Hamburg’s resurgence can be credited to several off-season signings, in particular Rafael van der Vaart, who has made a successful return to Imtech Arena after four years away from the club.
Heynckes is wary of the Dutchman, who left English Premier League side Tottenham in August.
“Rafael van der Vaart, the Dutch national player, is a real playmaker in midfield who can be very dangerous,” he said.
“He is a brilliant footballer, very good in finishing in front of goal.
“Due to the new players they have, Hamburg are on the rise and have a new structure to the squad.”