Football

Champions ready for season opener

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Expectations will be high when the 2007/08 Bundesliga season gets under way on Friday night with defending champions Stuttgart playing host to last year´s runners-up Schalke.

The Gelsenkirchen club led the way for much of last campaign only to relinquish top spot in the penultimate game of the season after defeat to local rivals Bochum. And Stuttgart, who were considered outsiders for the title, took advantage to claim their first trophy since 1992.

With revenge on their minds, Schalke arrive at the Gottlieb-Daimler Stadium on Friday looking to make a flying start to the season, and put three points between themselves and one of their league rivals.

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