Benfica take to the Estadio da Luz with a deficit to turn over as Bayern ran out 1-0 winners in the first leg at the Allianz Arena. Pep Guardiola’s men took the took the lead in tie courtesy of an Arturo Vidal strike in the second minute but Benfica held on that evening, keeping the score down to 1-0.
At the Estadio da Luz, Benfica will look to overturn the odds and snatch a victory that might see them go through to the semi-finals.However, with the likes of Jonas and possibly Nico Gaitan missing this seems to be an uphill task.
Kickoff and Live Telecast
Channel: Ten Sports (Now Known as Ten 1)
Date and Time: 14th April 2016, 12:15 A.M. IST
Venue: Estadio da Luz, Portugal
Live Streaming: http://www.tensports.com/football
Betting Odds: Benfica: 8/1; Draw: 3/1; Bayern Munich: 3/5
Benfica were dealt a major blow when top scorer Jonas picked up a booking at the Allianz Arena ruling him out of the game here. Nicolas Gaitan missed training on Monday and is expected to be ruled out for the game as well, leaving the goal scoring burden on Kostas Mitroglou and possibly Raul Jimenez on the night.
Bayern do not face any fresh injury concerns with the likes of Jerome Boateng, Holger Badstuber, Mehdi Benatia and Arjen Robben already deemed unfit for the tie. Pep Guardiola is expected to name the same team that faced Benfica at the Allianz Arena having rested several of the players in the weekend game.
Benfica (4-4-2): Moraes; Almeida, Nilsson-Lindelof, Jardel, Eliseu;Pizzi, Sanches, Fejsa, Guedes; Mitroglou, Jimenez
Bayern Munich (4-1-4-1): Neuer ; Lahm, Kimmich, Alaba, Bernat; Vidal; Costa, Muller, Thiago, Ribery; Lewandowski
Benfica hold some fascinating form at home and more specifically on the domestic front where they seem to have been dominant as well as rampant of late. Their only loss across all competitions comes against this Bayern side at the Allianz Arena. They have been free scoring in nature domestically and will hope they can take some part of that sort of form into this game.
Last 5 Matches: W-W-W-L-W ( Last match: Academica 1-2 Benfica)
Pep Guardiola’s side haven’t tasted a loss or draw since the first week of March. They’ve been in rampant form and seem set to continue that form against Benfica. Bayern have been relentless in their games of late and Benfica could find it hard to pull them down in this tie.
Last 5 Matches: W-W-W-W-W ( Last match: Stuttgart 1-3 Bayern Munich)
- Bayern are undefeated in their last 6 UEFA Champions League Matches
- No player has scored more than Jonas (30) all across Europe
- Nicolas Gaitan has played a direct hand in 7 of Benfica’s Champions League goals this season
- Bayern are undefeated in away games since their loss to Arsenal at the Emirates in October last year.
Raul Jimenez vs Joshua Kimmich
Raul Jimenez is set to start the night earmarked to fill the shoes the goal threat of Jonas> It’s however, easier said than done when considering Jonas has been on of the leading goalscorers across Europe this season.
Having been forced to come into a game of this magnitude and to replace a player of Jonas’ calibre against a side of Bayern’s quality and that too with your team behind in the tie can be a daunting task. However, if scripts are written in the Champions League, it is for these very situations.
Drawing battle lines against Jimenez on this occasion particularly will be Pep Guardiola’s new favorite youth player Joshua Kimmich who has proven himself to be quite an athlete. Having to take over duties from a bunch of injured Bayern central defenders, Kimmich has not disappointed of late and will look to continue his impressive form at the expense of Benfica this time.
Robert Lewandowski vs Jardel
Having conceded an early goal at the Allianz Arena in the offing, Benfica held strong defensively thereafter and Jardel takes most of the credit for his defensive discipline and grit on the night. Robert Lewandowski will have wondered how he didn’t manage to score on the night but much of that is down to Jardel holding strong.
Roberto Lewandowski will look to put the last leg behind him and continue his goal scoring streak with Bayern while Jardel will invoke the spirit of his last performance as Benfica direly need to keep Bayern from scoring if they are to indeed have any chance of going through.
This match up promises to be one for the neutral to watch with their eyes and ears open.
Bayern do not seem likely to lose this game especially with much of Benfica’s firepower missing.
Benfica 1-2 Bayern MunichPublished 13 Apr 2016, 15:01 IST