Bundesliga: Hamburg Looking to End Dortmund's Unbeaten Home Run

Xavier GonzalezContributor IAugust 4, 2011

Borussia Dortmund vs Hamburger

The opening match of the 2010-2012 Bundesliga season will feature the Champions Borussia Dortmund and Hamburg. This is one of the fixtures and goals are guaranteed.

It is going to be almost an year since Borussia Dortmund lost at home against Bayern Leverkusen and Hamburg will get a huge morale boost if they manage to win.

Michael Oenning has been having a very bad time at Hamburg so far, with the German managing just one win in his first eight matches. This poor return could be quickly forgotten if he manages to get Hamburg to the perfect start: a win against Borussia Dortmund.

His task will be made slightly easier by the absence of Lucas Barrios, Marcel Schmelzer, and Patrick Owomoyela for Borussia Dortmund. Jurgen Klopp will also want to prove that last season was not just a flash in the pan and that Borussia Dortmund can really fend off the fight from Bayern Munich over the course of a full season.

Michael Oenning will be without new signing Jacopo Sala, while the majority of the players signed from Chelsea will be available to play.

Stuttgart vs Schalke

Schalke will be looking to defy the odds when they face Stuttgart in a fixture that has rarely seen the away side end up with all three points.

Both teams did not fare well last season, which puts enormous pressure on their managers to deliver the results this season.

However, Ralf Rangnick would not have envisaged such a tough fixture on the opening day of the season. His task is made even tough by the fact that Stuttgart manager Bruno Labbadia has not lost a competitive match to Schalke.

However, Ralf Rangnick does seem to have Lady Luck shining on him. Bruno Labbadia is facing the prospect of choosing a number of second choice players for the match, as his first team is suffering from a lot of injury issues right now. Some of the crucial players like Ermin Bicakcic, Georg Niedermeier, and captain Matthieu Delpierre are missing for Stuttgart.

Stuttgart has had a very average pre-season, with the team unable to find consistent form. Schalke, on the other hand, have been rather impressive, with their last match ending up in a 11-1 score line in favour of Schalke.

Werder Bremen vs Kaiserslautern

Werder Bremen will be looking to end their luck with the season openers—the last five of which have ended in defeat—when they face Kaiserslautern. Kaiserslautern finished the last season in the seventh place, and they will be looking to do nothing but improve it.

Their history against Werder Bremen is extremely good. The signs are not looking good for Werder Bremen if history is anything to go by.

Recent form also does not skew towards Werder Bremen, who have been struggling for form throughout their pre-season. The team has won just two of their pre-season friendlies, and have just two clean sheets from them. Even though Kaiserslautern started their pre-season in a poor fashion, they seem to have recovered sufficiently.

In fact, they just produced a handsome performance against BFC Dynamo in the DFB Pokal. Kaiserslautern manager Marco Kurz will be every bit confident of achieving a victory over Werder Bremen, who are also struggling with injuries.

The likes of Sebastian Boenisch, Claudio Pizarro, Mikael Silvestre, and Denni Avdic are likely to miss the match.

Mainz vs Bayern Leverkusen

Even though the first two friendly matches looked like bringing the best out of Bayern Leverkusen, it has turned out to be the exact opposite. Bayern Leverkusen started out their friendlies with two consecutive wins, but since then, the team has just one victory and two heavy defeats.

The DFB Pokal defeat against Dynamo Dresden went into extra time, which will have definitely sapped the energy of older players like Michael Ballack. Michael Ballack, though, has not lost to Mainz in his career.

Bayern Leverkusen might have been at a slight disadvantage of having played the extra time in their last match, but the extra time exertions of Mainz in the match against Zweibrücken will negate any such disadvantage. Mainz have a full strength squad to pick against Bayern Leverkusen, who will be without Rene Adler.

However, new signing Andre Schurrle is available and could start the match for Bayern Leverkusen. Bayern Leverkusen will be hoping to maximize their returns from the match, as they will face a tough round of fixtures in the coming weeks. It is essential if they want to either retain their second place or improve on that position this season.

Bayern Munich vs Monchengladbach

Bayern Munich will be having one of those fixtures in which they simply do not seem like losing at all.

Bayern Munich will be hoping to extend their 16 year unbeaten run against Borussia Mönchengladbach by another year, when they faced the team that narrowly avoided relegation last season.

The chances of seeing Bayern Munich in a relegation fight are going to be very limited, but seeing Bayern Munich at the top of the table at the end of the season will depend on their performance in the match.

Three points in the opening round would also be a great start for new manager Jupp Heynckes. The biggest worry for Borussia Monchengladbach will be their recent form in the friendlies, which has seen the side win only two matches.

However, their most recent victory, which should only serve to improve their confidence, came in a highly competitive match against Jahn Regensburg.

The prospect of not facing both Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery would also be great for Lucien Favre, but the duo's participation in the match will depend upon a late fitness test.


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