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Lingard meets his idol Ronaldinho

The Toe Poke
By ESPN Staff

Bundesliga: Diego the focus as Werder host Leverkusen

BERLIN, Aug 17 (Reuters) - So just how good is Werder Bremen's new Brazilian signing, Diego? Werder fans will get a first chance to judge for themselves when they host Bayer Leverkusen in the Bundesliga on Saturday (1330 GMT).

Diego, bought for six million euros ($7.68 million) from Porto in the close season, had jaws dropping across the country on his Bundesliga debut last weekend when he scored one goal and set up another two in Werder's 4-2 win away to Hanover 96.

German newspapers could not resist comparing him to Diego Maradona and his new team mates were equally impressed.

'We're going to have a lot of fun with him,' striker Ivan Klasnic told reporters after the game.

If Diego can maintain anything like his opening-day form defending champions Bayern Munich could find themselves under more pressure than anyone imagined as they bid for a hat-trick of league titles.

Victory over Leverkusen would certainly be a good sign that Werder have what it takes to push Bayern hard this season.

Leverkusen enjoyed a 3-0 win over promoted Alemannia Aachen in their opening match and have title aspirations themselves.

Werder will be without defender Naldo after he suffered a thigh muscle injury in training this week.

Leverkusen will have Marko Babic suspended following his sending-off against Aachen.

Bayern made a solid start to their title defence, winning 2-0 at home to Borussia Dortmund.

The Bavarians are away to promoted Bochum on Sunday and will be confident of another three points.

Bayern lost French centre back Valerien Ismael for six months this week when he suffered a broken shin bone in training.

Ismael had lost his place in the side to new arrival Daniel Van Buyten but coach Felix Magath will be concerned that he has little cover for the Belgian or his Brazilian partner Lucio.

Bayern faced further distraction this week over reports that Owen Hargreaves was eager to accept an offer to join Manchester United.

Magath ruled out selling the England midfielder but rumours are likely to persist while the transfer window remains open.

The second round of matches in the Bundesliga begins with Nuremberg against Borussia Moenchengladbach on Friday night.

Werder's clash with Leverkusen is one of six matches on Saturday. Bayern play Bochum and Stuttgart travel to face Arminia Bielefeld in the two Sunday games.