The Champions League playoff round rolls on Wednesday with the marquee game of the day seeing Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich facing an unwanted test against FC Zurich.
Bayern is off to a mixed start under new manager Jupp Heynckes, with Moenchengladbach handing them an opening day loss.
Worryingly, it was goalkeeper Manuel Neuer - the world's third most expensive goalkeeper at 18 million euros following his move from Schalke in the summer - who cost them the points after failing to get to a long through-ball before Igor De Camargo headed into an empty net.
And Bayern was lucky to come away with a 1-0 victory at the weekend. Wolfsburg coach Felix Magath was incensed after his side had an effort from Patrick Helmes ruled out for offside. His mood did not improve when Luiz Gustavo struck the winning goal in stoppage time.
The attack is also looking like it could do with an injection of fresh blood. With Arjen Robben out of the lineup as he continues his recovery from a back injury, the Germans have looked timid. The Dutch playmaker is expected to be available Wednesday in what will come as a relief to a club whose Allianz Arena is, after all, hosting the 2012 Champions League Final.
With or without Robben, this is a tie Heynckes cannot afford to lose.
Zurich are not expected to offer much of a test, especially with midfielder Stjepan Kukuruzovic sidelined after tearing his ACL on the weekend in a league game.
The four other games of the day may offer little more than minor diversions.
Villarreal is expected to easily handle Danish side Odense, who got here by upsetting Panathinaikos in the third qualifying round with a wild 4-3 away win two weeks ago in Athens.
However, manager Juan Carlos Garrido is starting life without star midfielder Santi Cazorla, who joined cash-rich Malaga in the summer for 21 million euros, a deal trumped in Spain only by Fabio Coentrao's move to Real Madrid (30 million) and Barcelona's double swoop for Cesc Fabregas (29m euros) and Alexis Sanchez (26m euros).
The Yellow Submarine brought in Osasuna midfielder Javier Camunas - hardly in the same class as Cazorla - and strengthened its defense with the addition of Cristian Zapata from Udinese.
Garrido also signed veteran goalkeeper Cesar Sanchez from Valencia on a free transfer but at the age of 39 it remains to be seen whether the former Zaragoza custodian can still cut it at the top level.
Odense have been steadily making gains in Europe but remain quite far off La Liga's pace. Last season they performed dismally in the Europa League, winning just a single game in the group stage.
Troubled Belgian side Racing Genk travel to Israel to face Maccabi Haifa. Genk will be missing two key players -- forward Marvin Ogunjimi and Chelsea target Kevin de Bruyne-- and may be losing their manager, Franck Vercauteren, in short order to boot. Vercauteren has signed a rich deal with Al-Jazira and may depart the club after the first leg match.
Wisla Krakow host Cypriots APOEL Nicosia in a pairing that should favor the Poles. Krakow have yet to lose a match in league play so far, with a win and two draws.
Swedes Malmo also face a tough test in Croatia, where they will run headlong into a Dinamo Zagreb side that has won four straight league matches and are looking like a club that can break away from the rest of the pack.
Malmo have had a frustrating season so far: they are mired midtable, a full 21 points behind the leaders Helsingborg but had enough to oust disappointing Rangers in the previous qualifying bround.