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Will FCB put in another gala performance? Darmstadt vs. Bayern – Preview, Team News and Prediction

Leroy Sane und Jamal Musiala

FC Bayern Munich face bottom-of-the-table Darmstadt 98 on Saturday afternoon (3.30pm, Sky) and will be looking to build on their gala performance against Mainz 05 on the previous matchday at the Böllenfalltor. At home in the Allianz Arena, the team recorded a commanding 8:1 win against the Rheinhessen side to maintain a ten-point gap on league leaders Bayer Leverkusen.

The German record champions still have their backs to the wall in the championship race. Nine matchdays before the end of the season, they are still in second place in the table, while league leaders Bayer Leverkusen are showing no signs of dropping any points. However, anything is still possible for Munich. After a weak phase, the Reds have returned to top form in recent weeks, and the next demonstration of power is set to follow against Darmstadt.

Thomas Tuchel: „We have everything to lose“

At the press conference ahead of the clash with the team bottom of the table, Bayern coach Thomas Tuchel warned against underestimating Darmstadt. „The starting position is clear, but we won’t stumble. We have everything to lose, Darmstadt have everything to win. That’s the task, it’s not the first time we’ve done that. The team has trained completely like this, which is also due to the fact that the competition is increasing. I’m convinced that we’ll go into the game with the right attitude,“ said the 50-year-old.

Tuchel added: „Darmstadt lost to Leipzig, but had plenty of opportunities. We will prepare for it and have the ambition to approach it with the only right approach: When we put on the jersey, it’s a case of giving everything and there is only the goal of winning the game.“

Team news FC Bayern: Tuchel can almost draw from the full squad

Kingsley Coman
Photo: IMAGO

Ahead of the clash with SV, the Bayern coach gave a few glimpses of the planned starting line-up. Matthijs De Ligt and Eric Dier, who have established themselves in Bayern’s central defence in recent games, will start again.

„They win games, work well together and also with the full-backs and back sixes. The communication between the two is very good. There’s little reason to change at the moment, only when you see the quality of Dayot Upamecano and Min-Jae Kim. But they have a good chance of starting again because they have played very well recently,“ said Tuchel, explaining the decision.

After many injury worries over the course of the season so far, the Bayern coach can gradually draw on a full complement of players again. The 50-year-old commented on the personnel situation: „The only players we definitely won’t be playing with are the injured players: Kingsley Coman, Noussair Mazraoui, Bouna Sarr and Tarek Buchmann. Of the regular players, it’s really only Noussair and Kingsley. For the first time this season, we had a full squad of licence players against Mainz. That’s another reason why the quality of the game is increasing. We’re noticing that very clearly right now.“

Team news Darmstadt 98: „They know they have to surpass themselves“

Darmstadt coach Torsten Lieberknecht refrained from making a clear declaration of war against the German record champions ahead of the clash: „There’s no point in making big declarations of war. My boys are well prepared and know that they have to outdo themselves. I really liked our organisation and security in Leipzig,“ said the 50-year-old.

With the ball, the lads simply have to have more courage to get into a better positional game. We’re hoping for those moments against Bayern when we want to have our chance. It’s precisely in these moments that we have to show efficiency,“ he continued.

Lieberknecht gave the following update on personnel: „Marvin Mehlem, Matthias Bader, Fraser Hornby, Fabian Nürnberger and Clemens Riedel are out. Things are looking very good for Clemens. He has recovered well from his injury and is well ahead of schedule. The aim is for him to return to team training soon. Matej Maglica had to sit out in Leipzig due to a calf problem, but returned to training this week. Braydon Manu has now trained with the team for the second week. Fabian Holland is also an option again.

Direct comparison

The statistics of the two teams‘ head-to-head meetings clearly speak in favour of the German record champions. In nine meetings in the German top flight to date, Darmstadt have only managed one draw. This draw took place way back in 1978. Bayern have therefore been unbeaten in eight league matches against the Lilies.

The last meeting between the two teams in the first half of the season was won by the German record champions. The Munich side won 8:0 against SV after a goalless 45 minutes.


Munich face a must-win game next Saturday. Darmstadt are five points off the bottom of the table, a full twelve points adrift of 15th place in the table. They have only managed two wins in the league this season, the last of which came against FC Augsburg (2:1) in October last year. So far this calendar year, Darmstadt have only managed to pick up three points.

Meanwhile, FC Bayern are just emerging from a slump in form. Having previously picked up just one win from four Bundesliga games, the Reds have been on fire in both the Bundesliga and the Champions League in the past week, winning twice in commanding fashion. If Bayern’s run of form continues, a commanding victory should be possible on Saturday.

Darmstadt vs Bayern broadcast: Bundesliga live on TV and live stream – The most important information

  • Match: Darmstadt 98 vs. FC Bayern
  • Competition: Bundesliga
  • Matchday: 26
  • Date: 16/03/2024
  • Time: 3.30 pm
  • Venue: Merck-Stadion am Böllenfalltor
  • TV: Sky Sport Bundesliga 2, Sky Sport Bundesliga 1 (conference)
  • Livestream: Wow, Sky Go

Estimated line-ups for Darmstadt v Bayern:

  • Darmstadt 98: Schuhen – Skarke, Klarer, Maglica, Karic – Franjic, Holland – Justvan, Holtmann – Vilhelmsson, Polter
  • FC Bayern: Neuer – Kimmich, de Ligt, Dier, Guerreiro – Pavlovic, Goretzka – Sané, Müller, Musiala – Kane

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