Preview: DFB Super-Pokal

KAISERSLAUTERN, GERMANY - AUGUST 01: Philipp Lahm of Muenchen runs with the ball during the friendly match between 1.FC Kaiserslautern and FC Bayern Muenchen at Fritz-Walter-Stadion on August 1, 2012 in Kaiserslautern, Germany.

Featuring last year's champions of the 1. Bundesliga and the DFB Pokal, Borussia Dortmund, versus last year's runners-up in both of those competitions, FC Bayern Munich. Yes, that is a painful sentence to type.

The Super-Cup is an interesting match. It's certainly a bigger deal than the other pre-season competitions, and it would be a nice match to win. On the other hand, it doesn't count for anything in the standings, and it's not like beating Dortmund in the Super-Cup would make us happy if we fail to beat them in the Bundesliga. Basically, there's limited upside (a win wouldn't be that amazing), and moderately limited downside (a loss wouldn't be catastrophic, BUT you do worry about the players' mental/emotional state going into the season, and there's the possibility of injuries).

The Line-Up

There's currently a FanPost by Anton which provides a good, logical discussion of line-up possibilities. I encourage you to check that out, because there's some good discussion there. I'll just add my prediction here:

Mandzukic

Ribery - Müller - Robben

Gustavo - Kroos

Can - Badstuber - Dante - Lahm

Neuer

Yes, I think Ribery and Robben will play, but they would probably get subbed out quick (especially with Shaqiri ready for action). Müller can move to one of the wings, too, and Kroos up into the CAM spot if that's what the substitution patterns dictate.

I don't particularly like Can at LB, but that's my prediction. Dante? Just a hunch.

The Opponent

Dortmund has a lot to crow about, with two Bundesliga titles on the bounce. Their big loss this season was Shinji Kagawa, who went to Manchester United. The additions of Julian Scheiber and Marco Reus more than make up for that loss, though, as well as finally getting Götze back to full strength.

If they have a weakness, I guess it would be Weidenfeller - not that I think he's bad, I just think he's a solid, pretty good player, whereas they're excellent at every other position.

Still, I have a feeling this is the year we're going to regain our supremacy. Sunday should be an interesting test.

Final Thoughts

- The match will take place at the Allianz on Sunday, 7 PM Munich time, 2 PM Eastern in the USA. Gol! TV will be carrying live coverage. Check back here before the match for the Match Day Thread, and afterwards for recap and highlights.

- Do we prefer match previews 2 days before a match? If I leave more time before the match, we have a better opportunity for in-depth discussion and analysis, but the club's official site won't have any line-up hints yet. Whereas if I wait until ~ 18 or 20 hours before game time, we will sometimes have a more firm idea of who's going to be starting, but it's pretty much just like an early Match Day Thread. In fact, let's do a poll:

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