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Ze Roberto eyes Bundesliga title - and world crown

sports Updated: Sep 25, 2009 11:26 IST

AFP
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League-leaders Hamburg face the biggest test of their tenure at the top of the Bundesliga on Saturday as their Brazilian midfielder Ze Roberto takes on his former club Bayern Munich.

The 35-year-old has enjoyed a new lease of life since swapping Bavaria for the Hanseatic city and with three goals in six games is hoping to help Hamburg win the German league title this year.

Bruno Labbadia's Hamburg side will certainly have their credentials tested by third-placed Bayern who are getting stronger and chasing their fourth consecutive league win.

"Our team has a bright future and I am in the form of my life," said the midfielder.

"Bayern always starts the season with the goal of being German champions, we must also make sure that doesn't happen.

"My goal is to win the Bundesliga with Hamburg - and the World Cup with Brazil."

Having effectively retired from the Brazil national team so he could re-join Bayern in 2007, Ze Roberto said he would love to play for his country again at next year's World Cup in South Africa.

"Resigning from the national team was the biggest mistake of my life," he said having won 84-caps for his country.

"If national coach Dunga calls me, am I there.

"It is my biggest dream to still play at another World Cup for Brazil, I want to be a world champion."

Hamburg suffered a German Cup upset when they lost their second round tie at third division Osnabrueck on Wednesday, while Bayern roasted second division Rot-Weiss Oberhausen 5-0 at the Allianz Arena.

After being dumped out of the German Cup on Wednesday by Cologne, defending league champions Wolfsburg are ninth and need a win to boost flagging confidence at home to Hanover.

Goalkeeper Diego Benaglio is banned for this weekend's game having been sent off in the defeat by Leverkusen nearly a fortnight ago.

But both Edin Dzeko and strike partner Grafite are both in fine form playing in front of play-maker Zvjezdan Misimovic.

Jens Lehmann returns for Stuttgart against Eintracht Frankfurt after his club suspended the ex-Arsenal stopper for an unauthorised trip to Munich's beer festival.

The 39-year-old missed Wednesday's German Cup injury-time win against VfB Luebeck because he attended the Oktoberfest last weekend for a charity event after his side's 2-0 defeat by Cologne.

Neighbours and bitter rivals Dortmund and Schalke meet in Saturday's 134th Ruhr valley derby then later that night the draw for the third round of the German Cup takes place with both teams still involved.

With just one win in their last four games, Schalke are down to fourth in the league while Dortmund are 13th in the table with only their opening day of the season win over Cologne to show after six games.

Cologne are chasing their third consecutive win at second-placed Leverkusen having beaten Stuttgart and Wolfsburg in their last two games with striker Manasseh Ishiaku in form alongside Germany's Lukas Podolski after scoring twice against Wolfsburg.