Bayern Munich defender Mats Hummels believes that Saturday’s Klassiker could prove an important moment in the Bundesliga title race.
The champions face Borussia Dortmund at Signal Iduna Park looking to return to winning ways following a 1-1 draw at home to Hoffenheim prior to the international break.
That result allowed RB Leipzig to draw level with Bayern on 24 points at the top of the table, while Hoffenheim and Hertha Berlin are four points further behind, with Dortmund one of three sides on 18 points.
And Hummels, who made his first competitive appearance for Bayern against his old club in their 2-0 DFL-Supercup win in August, is aware that a defeat will offer a number of sides further hope in the title race.
“It’s a big game, I’m looking forward to it,” he said ahead of Germany’s friendly with Italy on Tuesday.
“If we lose, then a lot of teams, including Dortmund, would be very close to us again.”
Hummels believes he has settled well at Bayern since his acrimonious move from Dortmund following the end of last season, though he admits he was simply eager to keep errors to a minimum in his opening few matches.
“For the first few weeks, I just tried to do the simple things and avoid mistakes. It was important for me not to put pressure on myself,” he said.
“It’s not all perfect yet, but I’m quite satisfied.”