Coming up in this week's edition of GOAL! The Bundesliga Magazine...
An overview of the new kids on the Bundesliga block after the last-gasp signings before the close of the summer transfer window. And there were certainly a few eye-catching deals sealed, none more so than Bayern Munich's ultimately successful pursuit of Athletic Bilbao midfield dynamo Javier Martinez. Hamburger SV have meanwhile re-acquired the services of an old Red Shorts' favourite in Rafael van der Vaart, snapping up their once-and-future playmaker from Tottenham Hotspur. Schalke 04 for their part pulled off a coup with the season-long loan signing of winger Ibrahim Afellay from Barcelona, simultaneously farming out experienced Brazilian frontman Edu to Bundesliga newbies Greuther Fürth.
Top Game I
Borussia Dortmund are looking to get back to winning ways on Matchday 3 after having to make do with a share of the spoils at Nuremberg last time out. For their second home game of the season the champions face another stiff test in the form of Bayer Leverkusen, themselves again targeting a place in the mix at the sharp end of the standings this season. BVB have been made to work hard for the four points accumulated thus far - although it might be worth noting they are already a point better off than they were at this early stage in each of the last two campaigns. The visitors meanwhile recovered from a starting loss at Eintracht Frankfurt to notch a solid home win against Freiburg at the weekend and for them, a repeat of the season-opening 2-0 win at the Signal Iduna Park two years ago would, of course, be just the ticket.
If Hamburger SV are to avoid another season of trouble, toil and possibly worse, Heung Min Son is likely to have a significant say in the proceedings. Swapping the Dongbuk High School FC football academy in Seoul for the HSV youth programme at the age of 16, Son signed his first professional contract with the Bundesliga's only ever-present club on his 18th birthday. At the end of October 2010 he scored against Köln to become Hamburg's youngest-ever top-flight scorer. Last season, the versatile young South Korean forward played a major part in helping the team eventually avoid the drop, chipping in with vital late-season goals against Hannover and Nuremberg. This time around, he and his teammates are hoping for an altogether less fraught campaign.
Top Game II
An unsurprising home loss to FC Bayern, followed by a win on the road at Mainz: that's the creditable balance so far for SpVgg Greuther Fürth in their debut Bundesliga campaign. Their second attempt to get off the mark on home turf pits the Franconian outfit against another top-flight heavyweight however in the form of Schalke 04. Huub Stevens' Royal Blues, one of Germany's three Champions League group stage participants, have made a solid start on the domestic front, drawing at Hannover and beating Augsburg at home and they will be targeting another three points here. Fürth though have shown few signs so far of being overawed by their new surroundings, having held firm until the midway point against Bayern and then held their nerve to see out the win at FSV. Schalke know they can expect a tough encounter against last season's Bundesliga 2 champions.