Real Madrid and Bayern Munich will square up at the Bernabeu on Tuesday for the decisive second leg of the Uefa Champion’s League semi-final clash with Real Madrid holding a 2-1 advantage from the first leg played at the Allianz Arena a week ago.
Zinedine Zidane’ men were far from impressive in the first leg but were efficient enough to grind out a 2-1 win away from home. The away victory puts Los Blancos in pole position, but Bayern is a big club with huge European pedigree and cannot be written off so easily.
The Bavarian will fight with everything at their disposal, the tie is not yet over it is delicately poised and we are in for a great encounter at the Bernabeu on Tuesday.
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Jupp Heynckes’ team have since wrapped up the Bundesliga title, while the La Liga title was won on Sunday by fierce rivals Barcelona, so both teams are purely focused on achieving European glory with the distractions of the league behind them.
Madrid and Bayern played with a heavily rotated squad at the weekend, a lot of first-team regulars were rested to keep them fresh ahead of Tuesday’s duel at the Bernabeu.
Real Madrid laboured to a 2-1 victory over Leganes with Gareth Bale and Borja Mayoral delivering the goals. Bayern, in contrast, were impressive and clinical as they crushed an helpless Eintracht Frankfurt side 4-1 at the Allianz Arena with goals from youngster Niklas Dorsch who made his senior Bundesliga debut on Saturday, Sandro Wagner, Rafinha and Niklas Sule completing the scoring against Eintracht Frankfurt.
The Bavarian was forced into multiple substitutions in the first leg due to injury, Bayern will be without Jerome Boateng who is out for the rest of the season after picking up a thigh injury in the first leg, the Austrian left-back David Alaba could return on Tuesday.
Spaniard Javi Martinez may not feature against Real Madrid after picking up a concussion in the first leg, while Arjen Robben faces a race against time to be fit for the battle at the Bernabeu, Kingsley Coman is still out injured.
For Los Blancos, Isco and Dani Carvajal with shoulder and thigh injuries respectively will not feature. Zidane will have some difficulty getting a replacement for Carvajal at right back, the Spanish international has been consistent all season and a massive part of the club’s European success so far.
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Youngster Achraf Hakimi would have been an ideal replacement but his display on Saturday against lowly Leganes left much to be desired, Zidane has to dig deep to sort out that problem with Lucas Vazquez a more likely option at right back.
Bayern (4-3-3): Ulreich; Kimmich, Sule, Hummels, Rafinha; Tolisso, Thiago, Muller; Rodriguez, Ribery, Lewandowski
This will be a tough and intense match with so much still to play for, however, Madrid has an edge going into the match with an away victory and two away goals counting in their favour. Bayern dominated possession in the first leg and created lots of goal scoring chances but was wasteful in front of goal.
If they dominate possession like they did at home and create goal scoring chances then we might have a different story altogether from what happened in the first leg. The match is difficult to call, the margins are so tiny, however, we will settle for a 2-1 victory in favour of Bayern Munich, this will take the tie into extra time and ultimately penalties where it could be anybody’s game.