Munich - After wrapping up top spot in the Bundesliga for the winter, FC Bayern München go in search of more silverware with the semi-final of the FIFA Club World Cup in Morocco on Tuesday night (kick-off 20:30 CET).
Standing between European champions and a final berth, and potential fifth title in 2013, are Chinese club Guangzhou Evergrande - a rather unknown prospect, but then when you have won the treble and the UEFA Supercup, you arguably do not really need to worry too much about who you face.
"We're favourites," proclaimed Franck Ribery with the laissez-faire one might expect from a UEFA Best Player in Europe and hot Ballon d'Or candidate. "We've been very successful so far [this year] and now we want to crown it all here. It's a very special competition for us," chipped in goalkeeper Manuel Neuer. "We want to win the trophy so we'll go into the game with the right attitude."
45,000 fans in Agadir are set to witness on the African continent what Europe already knows about this Bayern side - that they are currently in a league of their own. 41 games without a defeat in the Bundesliga, a stroll into the last 16 of the UEFA Champions League and quarter-finals of the DFB Cup - it is going to be a challenge for anybody to deny Bayern another piece of silverware in Morocco.
"The Club World Cup is our last objective of the year," added Neuer. "We want to prove we really are number one. That is our goal." Bayern arrived for that undertaking on early Sunday morning, after an overnight flight following their 3-1 win over Hamburger SV. Being in action again on Tuesday does not leave them much time to charge their batteries, but that is something they have become used to over the past seasons.
Rarely have the record Bundesliga champions not had a midweek match on the agenda, but that is one of the unavoidable by-products bred by success. And they can look forward to a well-earned break if they reach as well as succeed in Saturday's final. "Of course we've got to win two games still, but if we win the title, then it will be a good holiday for the mind and for the family," added Ribery.
Bayern: Neuer - Rafinha, Boateng, Dante, Alaba - Lahm - Müller, Thiago, Kroos, Ribery - Götze
Guangzhou: Zeng Cheng - Zhang, Y.-K. Kim, X. Feng, X. Sun - Huang, Zheng Zhi, Conca - Gao Lin, Elkeson, Muriqui
Learn more about Bayern's challenge in the Club World Cup courtesy of the official Bundesliga YouTube channel: