BUNDESLIGA

Javier Martinez keen for Bundesliga debut with Bayern against Stuttgart

€40m Spain midfielder hogs limelight ahead of clash with Stuttgart at Munich's Allianz Arena

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 01 September, 2012, 2:41am
UPDATED : Saturday, 01 September, 2012, 3:43am
 

Bayern Munich host Stuttgart in their opening home league game of the season  tomorrow, with new signing Javier Martinez - the Bundesliga's most expensive player - eager to make his debut for his new club.

"I'm itching to get started, I would like to help the team as soon as possible," Martinez said as Bayern unveiled their latest acquisition, reported to have cost €40 million (HK$389 million).

The 23-year-old Spain midfielder signed a five-year deal from Athletic Bilbao and is set to play alongside Germany star Bastian Schweinsteiger in the defensive midfield role. But Bayern coach Jupp Heynckes put the brakes on any euphoria when asked if Martinez would make his debut  tomorrow. 

"Javi must first have some quiet. He has be integrated into the team, that is an important process," said Heynckes.

"There are a lot of expectations on him and it's not so important at the moment whether he plays on Sunday.

"What is more important is that he gets to know us."

Bayern enjoyed an impressive start to the season last Saturday with a 3-0 victory at newly promoted club Greuther Fürth, while Stuttgart suffered a 1-0 home defeat to Wolfsburg, thanks to Dutch striker Bas Dost's 90th-minute winner.

Today, defending champions Borussia Dortmund are at Nuremberg, with the hosts hoping to pull off a surprise.

Dortmund opened the season with a 2-1 win at home to Werder Bremen last Friday, with Germany midfielder Mario Götze coming off the bench to score the decisive goal.

"Perhaps that was a sign that not all Dortmund's cogs are working together," suggested Nuremberg coach Dieter Hecking on Thursday.

Nuremberg's Franken Stadium will be a 50,000-seater sell out, with Hecking insisting that his side have a chance if they build on their 1-0 win at Hamburg last Saturday.

"A compact and aggressive style of play can be a key, but all players have to go beyond their limit," he said.

"We can't afford to give Dortmund too much respect."

Nuremberg are waiting on the fitness of midfielder Mike Frantz, who missed training on Thursday with flu.

Dortmund are set to welcome back Poland defender Lukasz Piszczek, who missed the win over Bremen with a calf strain, while Götze is expected to start in Nuremberg.

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