Bayern look to bounce back on domestic duty

March 10, 2006
By Patrick Vignal

BERLIN, March 10 (Reuters) - The prospect of a League and Cup double would excite most sides, not so Bayern Munich.

The Bundesliga champions have no option other than to chase more domestic silverware after their 4-1 Champions League defeat by AC Milan at the San Siro on Wednesday.

They visit VfL Wolfsburg on Saturday eager to prove that, at least at home, they remain in a class of their own.

That was not obvious last Saturday when they suffered their second league defeat of the season and their first at home, losing 2-1 to Hamburg SV.

'We have played two games in four days and lost both,' grumbled Bayer chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge. 'Our dreams of shining in Europe are shattered and now we must make sure we can win what is still to fight for.'

That is a League and Cup double, nothing unusual for Bayern, who have achieved the feat five times, most recently last season.

Bayern are eight points clear at the top and do not usually suffer too much at Wolfsburg. They have lost only once there in eight trips and won 3-0 last season.

Rummenigge criticised the Bayern players for a sluggish start against Milan and made it clear he wanted to witness a burst of pride.

'In the first 30 minutes we were just not there and Milan taught us a lesson,' the former Germany striker said.

'Now I expect a reaction. We need a victory over Wolfsburg and then another one against Schalke 04. The last thing we want is to find ourselves under pressure in the Bundesliga.'

Second-placed Werder Bremen, who also exited the Champions League with a 2-1 defeat by Juventus on Tuesday after an embarrassing late blunder from goalkeeper Tim Wiese, will entertain troubled Hertha Berlin on Saturday.

Hertha have gone 13 competitive matches without a win and local media had speculated coach Falko Goetz would be sacked following a 4-2 home defeat by bottom club Cologne last weekend.

The club's officials, however, said they still trusted Goetz and he would keep his job whatever the outcome of Saturday's game.