The 60th Bundesliga season gets underway at the home of the Europa League champions, as Eintracht Frankfurt welcome Germany’s most successful club, Bayern Munich. Oliver Glasner’s men appeared to concentrate their efforts solely on European football as the 2021/22 campaign came to close, ending the season with an eight-game winless run in league action (D5, L3) despite winning their final four European matches.
Standing in Frankfurt’s way of starting this new league campaign in better form are Bayern, a side that home boss Oliver Glasner has gotten the better of only once in six prior personal H2Hs (W1, L5). Even so, underdogs Frankfurt are not without a chance as they avoided defeat in three of the five home league games in which they started as pre-match outsiders in 2021/22, and have even managed a seven-goal haul across the last three home H2Hs (W2, L1)!
The absence of Bayern’s departed five-time consecutive top-scorer Robert Lewandowski didn’t appear to be felt as their new-look squad – which included four debutants – racked up five goals in a record-extending tenth Super Cup victory last time out. Even without a recognised centre-forward, the fact that five different players scored suggests that we may see an unpredictable, yet cohesive Bayern strike force this term.
While Bayern were criticised by some for playing a weakened side in their final three games of last season after the title was confirmed (D2, L1), there should be no danger of that at the start of this campaign as Die Roten seek an 11th consecutive Bundesliga title. An opening day victory is by no means assured though as Bayern have failed to win their last two opening away league games (D1, L1), conceding five times in the process.
Players to watch: Each of Lucas Alario’s last 18 scoring appearances also featured over 2.5 goals, whilst three of the Frankfurt new boy’s last four Bundesliga goals were match openers. As for Bayern, Sadio Mané announced his arrival by scoring with his first shot on target in the Super Cup!
Hot stat: Frankfurt are unbeaten in five of their last six season opening league games (W3, D2, L1).
Eintracht Frankfurt possible starting lineup:
Trapp; Toure, Tuta, N’Dicka; Knauff, Jakic, Sow, Kostic; Kamada, Gotze; Borre
Bayern Munich possible starting lineup:
Neuer; Pavard, Upamecano, Hernandez, Davies; Sabitzer, Kimmich; Gnabry, Muller, Musiala; Mane.
Frankfurt will almost certainly improve on last season’s 11th-placed finish and should provide Bayern with a stern opening day test.
However, the champions looked irrepressible in attack against Leipzig last weekend, and may have too much firepower on the day.