Bayern seek finishing touch to fine build-up play

BERLIN - German champions Bayern Munich's quest to add the finishing touch to some of the best build-up play on view in Europe this season will be put to the test against second-placed Borussia Dortmund on Sunday.

Their failure so far to finish with goals what they so impressively start has left them languishing in the relative depths of ninth spot in the Bundesliga and is a source of considerable frustration to players and fans alike.

Even in their 2-1 Champions League win over Basel on Tuesday, a string of missed chances to improve a meagre season goal tally starkly illustrated the nub of the problem for last season's competition runners-up.

Germany midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger, who scored both goals in the win, was still focusing on Bayern's less than sharp shooting afterwards.

"We constantly play better than our opponents but we just can't get the results we want," said Schweinsteiger, whose second goal of the evening in the 89th minute at Basel sealed the victory.

"We have to score goals and we have failed to do that and have dropped points. Unfortunately it has been like that the whole season so far," he told reporters.

"Now we have to fine-tune a few things and then the goals and the results will come. I am certain that the success is going to come. I have great faith in the team."

Bayern, ninth after six matches with just eight points - some 10 behind leaders Mainz 05 - take on Dortmund, who are in sparkling form following a five-game winning streak and on 15 points, three behind Mainz.

Goals have been a rarity so far this season for Bayern, who have only managed to hit the target only five times in the Bundesliga.

In comparison Dortmund have the league's best strike force with 16 goals.

With Bayern wingers Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery out injured until later this year, Bayern will need to depend on strikers Ivica Olic, Mario Gomez, Miroslav Klose and Thomas Mueller to score. But they have a combined goal tally of just two this season.


"In Dortmund we can expect a fiery atmosphere but we just have to peak there in order to get these necessary points," said defender Daniel van Buyten.

Borussia on the other hand are not too concerned about who will score goals, having won their last five league games by at least a two-goal margin.

With a frontline that is currently the envy of the league, coach Juergen Klopp is much more concerned with his team's fatigue. Sunday's match against Bayern will be the team's seventh in just 23 days.

"We are only dealing with recovery at the moment," said Klopp. "Hard training is not on the schedule because of the tight programme we have," he said before Dortmund's Europa League match against Sevilla on Thursday.

Surprise leaders Mainz, on 18 points, will be looking to equal the Bundesliga record start of seven wins in a row when they host third-placed Hoffenheim while Bayer Leverkusen are taking on Werder Bremen with both teams still far from top form.

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