Bayern Munich vs FC Koln: Predicted XI, injury news, suspension lists and more | Bundesliga 2019-20
Fresh off a routine 3-0 victory over Red Star Belgrade in the Champions League, Bayern Munich will now turn their attention to the defence of their Bundesliga crown. The Bavarian giants posted a 1-1 draw away to RB Leipzig last time out in the league, and they would be looking to get back to winning ways at the Allianz Arena against FC Koln on Saturday.
FC Koln were relegated from the German top flight at the end of the 2017/18 season after finishing bottom of the league, but they returned after just a season away by finishing top of the Bundesliga 2.
It has however not been a rosy return for 'The Billy Goats' as they have won just one of their four league fixtures till date, and are currently 15th on the table, barely outside the relegation playoff spot.
They face an arduous task of trying to pick up anything from the Allianz Arena, which is no mean feat considering the fact that Die Roten have lost just two of their last 51 home matches in the Bundesliga.
Bayern Munich have two injury concerns ahead of the clash, with left-back David Alaba and central midfielder Leon Goretzka both ruled out due to hamstring issues.
There is no Bayern Munich player facing suspension in the Bundesliga.
Team news and probable lineup
Bayern Munich have an abundance of quality within their squad, leading Niko Kovac to try out numerous formations and rotate his players.
The only three guaranteed starters in the squad are goalkeeper and captain Manuel Neuer, centre-back Niklas Sule as well as star striker Robert Lewandowski, with the rest of the squad prone to rotation.
Head coach Niko Kovac has shown an affinity for the 4-2-3-1 formation in recent weeks, and he is likely to stick with this against FC Koln.
Philippe Coutinho got his second Bayern start in the Champions League during the week, and would likely start this weekend to continue blending in with his new teammates.
Having come off the bench in the victory over Red Star, Serge Gnabry would likely be restored to the starting lineup, while David Alaba's injury would see Lucas Hernandez deployed in the left-back position as was the case against Leipzig last week.
Kingsley Coman opened the scoring against Red Star, and he could be rewarded with another start, while Joshua Kimmich could be deployed in midfield to accommodate Jerome Boateng in the middle of the defence and Benjamin Pavard at right-back.