Bayern Munich striker Miroslav Klose is set to miss Saturday's league visit of former club Werder Bremen with a knee injury, but the defending champions hope to welcome back French star Franck Ribery.
Klose, the top scorer at the 2006 FIFA World Cup Germany™, limped off at half-time during Bayern's 1-0 win at Steaua Bucharest in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday night and faces a race to be fit for Saturday's clash at the Allianz Arena.
With current Bundesliga leaders Hamburg playing on Sunday, second-placed Bayern have a chance to go top of the table against Bremen, and hope to have midfielder Ribery back for the first time this season.
Werder have made a poor start to the season, and were held to a 0-0 draw by Cypriot minnows Anorthosis in the Champions League on Tuesday night. In contrast, defending champions Bayern have scored seven goals in winning their last two games, and confidence is high after Daniel van Buyten gave them a winning start to their Champions League campaign.
Ribery missed the trip to Bucharest, but is preparing to play his first game of the season after tearing ankle ligaments playing for France during UEFA EURO 2008 in June. "It would have been senseless (to play in Bucharest), I want to play against Bremen from the start," Ribery told German tabloid Bild on Thursday.
Bremen will have former Bayern striker Claudio Pizarro in their attack, and the Peruvian says they are looking to make a statement in Munich. "We will go there with respect, but no fear," he said.
Having allowed a 3-0 lead to slip to a 3-3 draw at Dortmund last weekend, third-placed Schalke 04 host Eintracht Frankfurt without midfielder Fabian Ernst and defender Christian Pander, who both received red cards in Dortmund. Ernst was given a three-match ban after being shown a straight red for a dangerous tackle on Dortmund's Jakub Blaszczykowski.
Having beaten Greek side APOEL FC 4-1 in the UEFA Cup on Wednesday night, Schalke will welcome back Germany striker Kevin Kuranyi who missed the trip to Greece with a thigh injury. Jefferson Farfan and Carlos Grossmueller are both struggling to be fit in time after suffering with the flu. Also on Saturday, bottom side Energie Cottbus host mid-table Bochum and second-from-bottom Arminia Bielefeld take on Cologne.
With both teams in UEFA Cup action on Thursday, leaders Hamburg are at mid-table VfL Wolfsburg on Sunday the same day fifth-placed VfB Stuttgart are home to Karlsruhe. Hoffenheim host fourth-placed Borussia Dortmund also on Sunday.