Buoyed by Saturday's Bundesliga hat-trick, Mario Gómez says it is time for FC Bayern München to "build momentum and get our confidence back" when CFR 1907 Cluj visit.
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FC Bayern München may have endured a slow start to their Bundesliga title defence but, for one player in particular, the light at the end of the tunnel emerged on Saturday.
A domestic double and a UEFA Champions League final set the bar high in Louis van Gaal's debut season at the Fußball Arena München. Bayern may have picked up from where they left off in Europe, winning their first two Group E fixtures, but have not hit such heights domestically. They sit tenth in the Bundesliga having collected 11 points from their opening eight matches.
This weekend, though, might have marked a turning point. A 3-0 victory against Hannover 96 was only Bayern's third top-flight triumph of the campaign and was all the more impressive considering the raft of injuries which Van Gaal has had to deal with. Miroslav Klose and Ivica Olić were two of the absentees against Hannover, meaning a starting berth for Mario Gómez. A match-winning hat-trick – his first league goals since February – later and the striker is optimistic ahead of the visit of CFR 1907 Cluj.
"We had a very positive experience against Hannover, which should give us confidence for the game against Cluj," said the 25-year-old. "Good times have been quite rare in the Bundesliga recently, now it is time to build momentum. We scored three times against Hannover and did not concede, so our defence was strong too. We want to win games so we can get our coolness and confidence back."
Four-time champions of Europe's premier club competition, Bayern have won their last five home games in the competition and will be widely fancied to make it six out of six against CFR. The Romanian titleholders have their own concerns domestically – they are 11th after 11 games – but opened their Group E campaign with a 2-1 triumph over FC Basel 1893 before succumbing 2-1 at Roma on Matchday 2.
"We are performing much better in the Champions League than in the Bundesliga," said Gómez. "[But] so are Cluj. Their performances in the Romanian league have not been as good as in the Champions League, even though they lost to Roma. They could have won that game, we know they are a strong team with quality.
"One thing is for sure: we want to win this game. The last few days have been much more enjoyable than the weeks before. Now I must continue scoring. Unfortunately I won't be able to get three in every game."