Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola considers Saturday's opponents Bayer Leverkusen "a great, great rival" for the Bundesliga title.
Both clubs have claimed victories in their opening two league games ahead of the clash at the Allianz Arena.
Guardiola believes Leverkusen deserve to be regarded as one of Bayern's major threats in their bid for a fourth straight league crown.
"Bayer Leverkusen are a great opponent. I am not going to say they are the biggest but they are a great, great rival for the Bundesliga title," the Spaniard said.
"They are a unique team with a very special style of playing football. They play really intensely and with a lot of pressure on the ball. So you don't have much time to think."
Guardiola warned his team they would need to keep possession well to claim all three points at home.
But he also expects Bayern to do plenty of defending against Leverkusen.
"Against this team we need to run if we don't have the ball. And when we have the ball we don't have to run - we are letting the ball doing it for us," Guardiola said.
"If we want to run with the ball Bayer are better. So we have to play with intelligence and let the ball do the work for us.
"If we don't have the ball we obviously have to adjust to Leverkusen's game."
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