Reigning champions Borussia Dortmund will kick off the 2011/12 Bundesliga season at home to Hamburg on Friday, August 5.Dortmund will open the 49th edition of Germany’s top-flight in its current format under lights at Westfalenstadion, taking on a fresh-look Hamburg under new sporting director Frank Arnesen.
The former Chelsea director has seen overseen a shake-up of Hamburg’s squad, including the departure of veteran striker Ruud van Nistelrooy and the signing of four youngsters from his ex-English Premier League club – Michael Mancienne, Jeffrey Bruma, Jacopo Sala and Gokhan Tore.
Dortmund, meanwhile, have added Club Brugge goalscoring midfielder Ivan Perisic as they look to defend their league title and aim for new heights in the Champions League.
Elsewhere on the opening weekend, German giants Bayern Munich host Borussia Monchengladbach at Allianz Arena.
The match will give Bayern fans their first glimpse at new goalkeeper Manuel Neuer, who fended off overtures from Manchester United to join the Munich club from Schalke.
Bayern are undergoing a period of rebirth after finishing third in the league last term, and will soon welcome one-time caretaker manager and Jupp Heynckes as the permanent replacement for former boss Louis van Gaal.
The club have signed Genoa right-back Rafinha and Germany Under-21 international Nils Petersen in addition to Neuer.
Meanwhile, 2010/11 runners-up Bayer Leverkusen will travel to Mainz to kick off their season under new manager Robin Dutt.
One player certain to get a hostile reception at the Coface Arena will be Germany international Andre Schuerrle, who signed to Leverkusen from Mainz in the off-season.
Bundesliga II champions Hertha kick off their top-flight campaign at home to Nuremberg, while fellow promoted club Augsburg mark their first-ever Bundesliga match with a visit from Freiburg.
In other opening weekend fixtures, VfB Stuttgart play host to Schalke at the Mercedes-Benz Arena, Kaiserslautern travel to Werder Bremen, Hoffenheim visit Hannover and Cologne clash with Wolfsburg.