Bayern welcome Ribery for Hannover trip
BERLIN, Sept 25 (Reuters) - If Bayern Munich's visit to Hanover 96 follows the season's standard script, expect familiar foe Jan Schlaudraff to shrug off an injury in time to cost the champions further points on Saturday.
Bayern old boys Paolo Guerrero, Piotr Trochowski and Claudio Pizarro have all found the net against the alma mater in a bumpy start to the season for Juergen Klinsmann's side.
A trip to Hanover is a good opportunity to atone for last weekend's 5-2 defeat at home to Werder Bremen -- a result that left them in eighth place -- but the thought of facing another discarded former player may give Bayern pause for thought.
Schlaudraff moved to Hanover this year after a single, injury-disrupted season at Bayern during which he failed to score a single goal in first team competition.
He showed definite signs of a return to form when he scored two excellent goals in a 5-1 win over Borussia Moenchengladbach on Sept. 14.
He suffered a knee injury in Hanover's next game against Bayer Leverkusen but that has proved less serious than first feared and the player told German media this week that he could be fit in time to face Bayern.
Bayern have a comeback kid of their own in Franck Ribery.
The French midfielder returned from a serious ankle injury to play the last 25 minutes of Bayern's 2-0 German Cup win over Nuremberg on Wednesday and he is likely to be on the bench again on Saturday.
"We still have a lot to improve on," defender Philipp Lahm said after a not entirely convincing performance against Nuremberg. "The win was never in any doubt but we still could have done a lot more."
Bayern are three points behind leaders Schalke 04, who get the weekend action underway with a match at Cologne on Friday.
The other highlights see wealthy village team 1899 Hoffenheim, currently sitting pretty in second place, visit Bremen on Saturday, and third-placed VfB Stuttgart travel to face unpredictable Borussia Dortmund.