This hunting duel in the German football Bundesliga during the advent probably had no fan in the lead before the season started.
How, too? The long-time Bundesliga dominator FC Bayern only in fifth place after 15 match days followed directly by the small SC Freiburg with two points behind – this is a real surprise before the duel to the so-uneven clubs on Wednesday (08:30).
And the Munich football stars are approaching the task at Black Forest Stadium with some respect. "It's going to be a tough match," predicted coach Hansi Flick, who was a tough match.
After 6: 1 against Werder Bremen with the revival experience of top star Philippe Coutinho, the feeling of strength and sovereignty is left reasonably intact with Bavaria.
But the weekly schedule is only a third complete, as Captain Manuel Neuer warned: "We've made nine points before the last three games."
Consequently, it will be reloaded first in Freiburg and then on Saturday against VfL Wolfsburg. "It is not so easy to survive away in Freiburg," Neuer recalled tough games in the past: "We want to dominate and play our game as we have shown before."
Salihamidzic sends a declaration of war to the competition
Flick is optimistic after the inhibition of the charges against Bremen has been overcome. "You could see the greed for goals again," said the 54-year-old.
Hasan Salihamidzic immediately sent match announcements from Munich to the better placed title rivals RB Leipzig, Borussia Mönchengladbach and Borussia Dortmund. "I'm sure the championship will only go through Bayern Munich," said the transgaming.orgs director, promising for 2020: "We are attacking fully."
And continue with Flick as head coach? The Bayern bosses only want to answer this question after the previous round match against Wolfsburg. "I also have very clear ideas," Flick said before the trip to Black Forest.
He likes the boss role, but also his own plans. He has long thought about winter preparations in Qatar and possible transfers. "There are always strategies if-then. You have to have them. You start to worry. We are certainly not unprepared," he said in the event.
But the focus is on contemporary. "Freiburg has played very good football for a long time. It is not surprising that they are at the top," said international player Serge Gnabry. The attacker expects a rebellious opponent and a special atmosphere: "It won't be an easy game for us. The stadium there is always shaking."
Flick full of praise for Christian Streich
The opponent and the somewhat smaller playing field are also special for Flick. "It's not easy for many teams to play there. It's a team that is very compact and puts a lot of pressure on the ball. The team is right where it is," he said.
For him, Freiburg's soaring flight is primarily the work of his trainer-colleague Christian Sreich. "What Christian has done in recent years is simply phenomenal."
The situation with the record champions is still tense. Leon Goretzka is out with muscle problems, but Javi Martínez wants to return to Bremen after serving a suspension.
After Goretzka's failure, Flick was also able to put together artists Coutinho and Thomas Müller. "I see absolutely no reason not to do it, not to try it. Both have the quality of playing side by side. They also complement each other well," Flick said.