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Monday, May 14, 2012
Beckenbauer laments Bayern midfield

ESPN staff

Bayern Munich honorary president Franz Beckenbauer has bemoaned the paucity of Bayern Munich's midfield options ahead of next Saturday's Champions League final in Munich.

Having beaten Real Madrid to reach the final, Bayern crashed to a humbling 5-2 DFB-Pokal defeat to rivals Borussia Dortmund this weekend, with the Bavarians' midfield torn to shreds by Dortmund counter-attacks.

With David Alaba, Luiz Gustavo and Holger Badstuber suspended for Saturday's showpiece, Bayern will be heavily weakened defensively and Beckenbauer admits that he holds fears about their lack of defensive strength.

Writing in Bild, Beckenbauer said: "I assume that (Thomas) Muller will come into the starting XI. With (Franck) Ribery, Muller, (Arjen) Robben, behind them Schweinsteiger and (Toni) Kroos we would have a crazily attacking midfield. But perhaps also a somewhat unpredictable one.'

"With Schweinsteiger you sense that he is still not 100% fit after his injury," he added. "But despite the debacle against Dortmund, the Champions League final is not lost by a long shot. And I would not like to imagine that Bayern will be without a single title at the end.''

Chelsea too will be heavily depleted for the final clash, with Ramires, Branislav Ivanovic, Raul Meireles and John Terry all suspended. Injury doubts also surround defenders Gary Cahill and David Luiz.

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