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Mar 28, 2013

Bayern on brink of Bundesliga glory

Runaway Bundesliga leaders Bayern Munich could clinch the title at the weekend and become the first German top flight team ever to do so in March.

Bayern face Hamburg at home but, if they win, would also need Stuttgart not to lose when they take on Borussia Dortmund, also at home.

It is only a matter of time until the Bavarians, 20 points clear at the top of the table, bag in their 23rd German championship.

But they are not focusing on winning the title this weekend - only on getting a positive result as they prepare to face Juventus in the Champions League on Tuesday.

"We want a good result against Hamburg ahead of the Juve game," Bayern keeper Manuel Neuer told kicker.

Midfielder Toni Kroos, who missed the recent Germany games with a minor injury but returned to training earlier this week, said: "It would be great to win the league on Saturday as it would be at home.

"In the past, I have also said I want to win the league as early as possible, but we want to get a good feeling for Tuesday."

Bayern general manager Matthias Sammer urged his players to keep their standards high, saying: "Recently, our performances have been too shaky, but the results were good if you leave out the Arsenal game.

"You cannot play at top level for a whole season - that is human. But ever since the Dortmund cup match, 2% or 3% has been missing from the game that has distinguished us," he told Bild.

He said it would be "an unbelievable moment" if Bayern won the title on Saturday, but added: "I would have no respect if somebody stepped out of line.

"Our task is to beat Hamburg. But we only have 72 hours after that until we face Juve."

He said the Serie A team were "compact and clever" but added: "They are not better than us. We are better, but we have to be prepared to beat them."

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