Found February 14, 2013 on Fox Soccer:
Bayern Munich coach Jupp Heynckes says he is delighted to be able to select Bastian Schweinsteiger to face Wolfsburg on Friday, and dismissed recent criticism of the Germany international. Germany's World Cup winner Olaf Thon claimed that the 28-year-old's career is on a downward spiral and predicted he will soon lose his place for club and country. However, Heynckes believes he is still the best midfielder in the world, and he will not be taking any notice of Thon's criticism. "For me, Bastian Schweinsteiger is a big strategist, a director," he said. "Just as a film director has his script, he has his match plan. "Just look at Barcelona, the club everybody measures themselves against. They have a certain Sergio Busquets who is a fantastic player and he has never dribbled in his whole life. "Why not? Because you have got to have somebody who shifts the play and can link up. That is precisely what Schweinsteiger does, which is why I am not paying any attention to this criticism. "I am delighted to have him. Together with Busquets, he is the best midfielder in the world." Schweinsteiger will get the chance to prove that tomorrow night, although he will not have his defensive midfield decoy Javi Martinez alongside him. The Spaniard misses out with an injury which Heynckes hopes will not rule him out of next week's Champions League clash with Arsenal. "He was going to start tomorrow, but he can't," said the Bayern coach. We'll have to see if he can be involved (against Arsenal)." Bayern's loss is Wolfsburg's gain as they hope to take advantage of what may consequently be a slightly weaker Bayern side. The Wolves are one of 11 clubs duelling for two Europa League berths, but their coach Dieter Hecking knows tomorrow night will be an acid test for his side. "We know that we have got to get a lot right to have any chance against Bayern," he said. "They are a fantastic team. They have incredible quality and hardly make any mistakes and if you let them play, then you have no chance. "But it's not about Bayern, but about ourselves. We have room for improvement which is why it is a big challenge we are facing to see how far we have come." Hecking has already frustrated Bayern this season with his former club Nurnberg, who remain the only home team to have scored against the record champions in a 1-1 draw. "That game shows that, as long as it remains 0-1, you always have a chance," said Hecking. "I would be happy if they have conceded one or two more goals after their trip here." The Irishman went off with an injured knee during Saturday's 3-1 win over Hearts and initial assessments have shown damaged cartilage. McNamara revealed the 23-year-old might need surgery to tidy up the knee. He said: "Gav Gunning came off last weekend and it now looks like we could miss him for the rest of the season. "We still don't know the full extent but we will find out soon enough. "It's disappointing because he has done well for us. Especially at this stage, with cup games and the last bit of the league to go." McNamara might look outside the club for reinforcements but Brian McLean will slot in at centre-back for Saturday's trip to face Clydesdale Bank Premier League leaders Celtic. McNamara said: "Brian did very well when he came on against Hearts so we will see what we are going to do." Striker Jon Daly looks set to shake off a knock in time to face Celtic but there is a doubt over former Celtic midfielder Willo Flood. "We are waiting on Willo, he was ill at the start of the week so hopefully he is a lot better on Friday before the game," McNamara said.
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