Munich Thriller On The Cards
Bayern Munich v Man City
The champions of Germany and England face each other in what promises to be a thrilling contest in Munich on Wednesday.
Bayern lie second in the Bundesliga on goal difference after three games, with two wins and a draw for Pep Guardiola’s side to date. Mario Gotze and Franck Ribery scored their goals in a routine 2-0 win over Stuttgart following a draw with Schalke and win over Wolfsburg in their first league game of the campaign. They lost out in the German Super Cup to Borussia Dortmund and were victorious in the German Cup over Preussen Mun.
Manuel Pellegrini’s side also have seven points in their domestic league, but have played a game more than the Germans. They won both of their first two games quite comfortably against Newcastle and Liverpool but have been far from convincing since then, losing at home to Stoke before earning a point with a 2-2 draw against Arsenal on Saturday. Sergio Aguero scored the opening goal of the game but the Gunners had looked good for three points when Jack Wilshere and Alexis Sanchez both scored fine goals to put them in front but Martin Demichelis’ late header gave City a share of the spoils.
Aguero has scored three goals already this season, despite playing just over 180 minutes of football.
Bayern will be without a trio of big hitters in midfield with Thiago Alcantara, Javi Martinez and Bastien Schweinsteiger all missing out with knee problems. It says much for the quality of squad at Guardiola’s disposal that he can still select a midfield featuring Xabi Alonso, David Alaba, Franck Ribery and Phillip Lahm though.
The jinxed Holder Badstuber is definitely out too as the defender suffered a ruptured thigh muscle in the win over Stuttgart after only just returning from a near two-year absence and will be out for a few months at least with new arrival Mehdi Benatia expected to replace him while full-back Rafinha is also doubtful with an ankle problem.
City have concerns over both Stevan Jovetic and Fernando, the former has a hamstring injury he suffered on international duty with Montenegro last week while the Brazilian midfielder has a groin problem. Argentine full-back Pablo Zabaleta is suspended with new arrival Bacary Sagna a ready-made replacement. Yaya Toure should return to the side after missing out at the weekend following a late return from the international break.
This will be the third time in four seasons that these teams have met in the group stages with both sides claiming away wins last season. City won 3-2 in Munich last season after a stirring comeback gave them three points as David Silva, Aleksander Kolarov and James Milner got the goals for the visitors to completely turn the game on its head after Thomas Muller and Gotze had given Bayern a two-gaol start.
Muller also scored at the Etihad in a 3-1 win for the Bavarians last October, with Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben getting the other goals before Alvaro Negredo’s consolation.
The host are firm favourites at 8/13 in the Match Betting market and should have enough to see off a City side who have looked shaky at the back for quite some time despite their injury woes. City’s strengths are definitely more in attack so the 8/11 on both teams scoring is the pick of the bets for me.
Aguero to net first at 7/1 and 19/10 anytime is a good price for value with Robben 9/2 first and 6/5 anytime the standout selections in the goalscoring stakes.