Reeling from their first loss of their Champions League campaign, Bayern Munich will be relieved that the team they will play on Matchday 13 doesn't have Sergio Agüero. Their opponent will be Hertha Berlin rather than Manchester City, and Salomon Kalou and Julian Schieber certainly are less menacing striking options.
It's the start of a difficult stretch for Die Alte Dame, as after hosting Bayern they will travel to Borussia Mönchengladbach, before returning home to face Borussia Dortmund. So far it's been a disappointing season for Hertha, with 14 points on the table after 12 matches played, but they still are three points above the relegation zone. Dropping to the 2. Bundesliga shouldn't be too much of a worry, as it appears that there are a few teams in the division that are legitimately worse. However, with the collapse they had last season after the Winterpause, a run of bad form will certainly be worrying for fans.
Manager Jos Luhukay will be hoping his team will be up to the task of defending a prolific Bayern attack. Franck Ribéry should be back in the lineup and will be trying to discover some form before the important Champions League matches of the spring. Mario Götze is the leading scorer for Pep Guardiola's side with seven goals, and both Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Müller have six each.
The Bavarians should dominate, as Luhukay admitted this week. He may set up his side again in a 5-2-2-1, like he did against Bayer Leverkusen. Even though it didn't work against the Werkself, it may be worth another shot against a good attacking team as it gives his side the best chance to take a point. Even if they defend well, it will most likely still be a loss, but not allowing the goal difference to be destroyed could be big later in the season. Most of the game will be played in the home side's half, so expect a few sightings of Manuel Neuer in midfield.
Hertha BSC injuries and suspensions:
Out: Sascha Burchert (muscle problems), Marius Gersbeck (knee), Sebastian Langkamp (ankle), Fabian Lustenberger (groin), Peter Pekarík (thigh), Alexander Baumjohann (knee), Tolga Cigerci (toe)
Bayern Munich injuries and suspensions:
Out: David Alaba (knee), Thiago Alcantara (knee), Holger Badstuber (thigh), Philipp Lahm (ankle), Javi Martínez (knee), Pepe Reina (calf), Tom Starke (ankle)
Bayern's injuries seriously hamper the options that Guardiola has in midfield, but the recent return of Bastian Schweinsteiger is a boost, however he probably will not start. Sebastian Rode figures to get another chance for this reason, although Pierre-Emile Højbjerg could start too.
Hertha BSC: Thomas Kraft, Nico Schulz, John Heitinga, Jens Hegeler, John Anthony Brooks, Marcel Ndjeng, Per Skjellbred, Hajime Hasogai, Änis Ben-Hatira, Roy Beerens, Julian Schieber.
Bayern Munich: Manuel Neuer, Juan Bernat, Jérôme Boateng, Mehdi Benatia, Rafinha, Xabi Alonso, Sebastian Rode, Franck Ribéry, Mario Götze, Thomas Müller, Robert Lewandowski.
Match Date/Time: 3:30 p.m. local, 9:30 a.m. ET
Venue: Olympiastadion, Berlin, Germany
TV: GolTV (U.S.), Betway (U.K.), GolTV (Canada), Sky Bundesliga 3/HD (Germany)
Online: GolTV Online (U.S.), Sky Go Deutschland (Germany)