Bayern Munich vs. Arsenal: Match Preview
Five times UEFA Champions League winners Bayern Munich will face Arsenal in the first-leg, round-of-16 of the competition at the Allianz Arena.
In recent years, Bayern and Arsenal have met each other several times. But every time, the results have gone in the favor of Bayern. So, it will be a statement win for the Gunners if they can overcome the challenge of the mighty Germans in the European football’s showpiece tournament.
The last time they met, the Bavarians destroyed Arsenal 5-1 at the Allianz Arena, after the Gunners had won the first group game 2-0 in London. This Champions League fixture between these two powerhouses should be totally different, however.
Both teams prepared for this game with a win in their domestic league. Bayern won 2-0 against Ingolstadt in Bundesliga thanks to late goals from Arturo Vidal and Arjen Robben.
On the other hand, Alexis Sanchez scored both goals in a 2-0 win for Arsenal against Hull City.
Both Arsenal and Bayern leave it late to grab the wins in those games. However, they will hope to change that in this mouthwatering Champions League game.
Team News: Bayern Munich
Douglas Costa and Arjen Robben didn’t play from start in the Saturday’s game. The pair should return to left and right wings respectively in the starting XI.
The central midfield will likely be covered by Xabi Alonso and Arturo Vidal, while in attacking-midfield position, Thiago Alcantara could be preferred over Thomas Muller.
In defense, a back four of Philipp Lahm, Javi Martinez, Mat Hummels and David Alaba should start to halt the Gunners’ deadly attack.
Bayern Munich: Predicted Line-up (4-2-3-1)
Neuer – Lahm, Martinez, Hummels, Alaba – Alonso, Vidal – Robben, Thiago, Costa – Lewandowski
Team News: Arsenal
Arsene Wenger preferred Alexis Sanchez to Oliver Giroud in center-forward role against Hull. The Chilean’s two-goal performance in that game means he should start against the Munich side.
It is very likely that Wenger will shield his defense with two defensive mid fielders considering the attacking threat posed by Robert Lewandowski and Co. One of them is likely to be Granit Xhaka and the another postion will likely be a tussle between Francis Coquelin and Mohamed Elneny.
At the back, Hector Bellerin, Laurent Koscielny and Mustafi should play as they are fixtures of this Arsenal team, while the left-back position may be covered by Kieran Gibbs.
In goal, Petr Cech will be replaced by David Ospina, Arsenal’s regular Champions League goalkeeper this season.
Arsenal: Predicted Line-up (4-2-3-1)
Ospina – Bellerin, Mustafi, Koscielny, Gibbs – Xhaka, Coquelin – Walcott, Ozil, Iwobi – Sanchez
Bayern vs. Arsenal: Head-to-Head (H2H)
Total games: 8
Bayern Munich wins: 4
Arsenal wins: 3
Bayern vs. Arsenal: TV Schedule and Channel
In the U.S., the match will be live on fuboTV, Fox Sports GO, Fox Soccer 2GO USA, Fox Sports 1 USA, and Fox Deportes. In the U.K., the game will be broadcast on BT Sport 2, BT Sport Live Streaming, and BBC Radio 5 Live. For other regions, the TV schedule can be found in the link here.
Bayern Munich vs. Arsenal: Prediction
Arsène Wenger: "The best way to deal with Bayern Munich [in the Champions League on Wed] is to win today, and to get the priorities right." pic.twitter.com/2sXMzHFkmT— Arsenal (@tomgunner14) February 11, 2017
Quality wise, Bayern Munich is a step above Arsenal. However, both teams have struggled in recent times to find their best form, and they will look to change that in this important Champions League game. Arsenal win in their last game surely have provided them a much need confidence after two consecutive losses in the Premier League.
Similar to their opposition, Bayern struggled to break down a resolute Ingolstadt team until Vidal and Robben come to their rescue. They will have the home advantage on Wednesday which surely makes them favorite for this crucial CL tie.
Final Predicted Score: Bayern Munich 2-2 Arsenal
Bayern vs. Arsenal: Betting Tips and Odds
- Bayern Munich win: 8/15
- A draw: 16/5
- Arsenal win: 5/1
- Under 2.5 goals: 5/4
- Over 2.5 goals: 4/7
- Both teams score: 4/6
- Both teams fail to score: 11/0
The odds were provided by Paddypower.
Key Stats to consider
- Bayern Munich has won 11 of their last 12 games in all competitions.
- Bayern has kept clean sheets in their recent two matches.
- Arsenal’s win against Hull was their first victory since the FA Cup win vs. Southampton.
- Bayern has been a bogey team for the Gunners having knocked Arsenal out every time they have faced in recent seasons.
The Bayern-Arsenal stats were provided by Soccerway.
[Featured Image by Lennart Preiss/Bongarts/Getty Images]