Liverpool vs Bayern Munich
This is the UEFA Champions League at its best. Two of Europe’s finest teams are set to battle it out in the first knockout stage, at Anfield, on Tuesday night.
The atmosphere on Merseyside will be electric when Liverpool and FC Bayern take to the field, and the passionate Reds fans will roar their team on against the reigning Bundesliga champions. Already out of the Carabao Cup and the FA Cup, Jurgen Klopp will be desperate to stay in this one, to ensure a season of such promise doesn’t start to fall apart.
And equally, Bayern coach Niko Kovac will be determined to take his team deep into the competition, as they gather serious momentum after a slow start under his leadership.
This tie, over two legs, will surely be one to pick up in the Champions League 2019 highlights as no other has two such well matched teams, both packed with world class quality.
A time of destiny for Liverpool?
This could be the most incredible season since pre Premier League days for the long-suffering Liverpool fans, especially if they can win the domestic title for the first time in three decades. It’s going to go down to the wire. The Reds are neck and neck with Manchester City and Spurs haven’t yet given up the chase.
After the Sky Blues had a serious blip over Christmas they have come back in scintillating form and all the talk in the UK is whether Liverpool can keep their nerve and hold off the champions. The Reds certainly have the firepower. Sadio Mane has scored in four consecutive league games and taken his season tally to 12, while Mo Salah is battling it out at the top of the Premier League scoring charts; locked on 17 goals with City’s Sergio Aguero.
FC Bayern winger Kingsley Coman is available to face Liverpool in Tuesday’s crucial Champions League last-16 clash
Flying wingback Andy Robertson has a wicked cross on him and he has said the Reds will come out all guns blazing on Tuesday. And at the back the man mountain Virgil van Dijk will aim to repel anything the Germans can throw at him.
Defeat is unthinkable and the Reds are ready for the fight.
Bayern has eyes on the biggest prizes too
Niko Kovac’s Bayern has recovered from a slow start in the Bundesliga to put a heap of pressure on BVB at the top of the table; and that league looks like going down to the wire too. The Bavarians had a hard fought 3-2 win away to Augsburg on Friday night to climb to within two points of the top and now it’s over to Dortmund.
Kingsley Coman made his case for a starting place on Tuesday with a man-of-the-match performance in Augsburg, scoring two and coming close to a hat-trick.
And Van Dijk and co won’t need reminding of the threat of Polish hit man Robert Lewandowski. He hasn’t been quite as prolific in the Bundesliga this season, but has made up for it in Europe, bagging eight goals in the six group matches. To put that into context, Salah is Liverpool’s top scorer with three.
Bayern has a defence well equipped to cope with Liverpool’s attacking threat, with Mats Hummels, David Alaba and Joshua Kimmich equally able to support the midfield and attack when the Bavarians are on the front foot.
Meanwhile, a recent story has emerged from Munich that FC Bayern came close to appointing Klopp as their head coach back in 2008, shortly before he became BVB’s most successful boss in recent times. How he would love to show the Bavarians what they have missed… but it won’t be easy.
With ten European Cup or Champions League titles between them, five each, Liverpool and FC Bayern are two elder statesmen of the competition. Only Real Madrid and AC Milan have won more. And these two are both in the frame for another win, in the group of teams most likely to depose Real Madrid.
According to the latest Champions League 2019 betting odds they are two of seven clubs capable of lifting the trophy in a wide open competition.
The Reds are on a run of five matches unbeaten and 12 unbeaten at Anfield, so their Liverpool home is beginning to look like the fortress of yore.
But Bayern arrives at Anfield with seven wins in the last eight and the momentum is growing.
||Liverpool vs Bayern Munich
||2-3 Total Goals @ 2.04
|February 20, 04:00(GMT+8)
This is a fascinating clash and really hard to call. Our pre-match us odds have the hosts at 2.01, with Bayern at 3.55 and the draw 3.45.
Home advantage is in Liverpool’s favour, but I feel momentum is slightly with the Germans, as Klopp’s side has struggled to put teams away, drawing twice on the bounce recently.
So I’m going to stay on the fence and back a close game with no more than one goal in it. And if one side wins 2-0 or 3-0 I’m using a nice hedge!
|A SHORT EXPLANATION ON HOW OUR () BETS ARE WORTH:
| = €20 (Highly confident)
|| = €10 (CONFIDENT)
|| = €5 (SOMEWHAT CONFIDENT)
Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.
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