It will need to be a historic evening at the Allianz Arena tonight if Bayern Munich are to advance to the Champions League final, as they will need to overturn a mammoth 3-0 deficit which has only been achieved once before in the competition.
A brilliant brace from Lionel Messi and a goal at the death of the goal from Neymar all but sealed Munich’s fate, but Barcelona will be wary of the threat that their former manager’s side possess and they will know that the job is not complete just yet.
Munich overturned their 3-1 defeat in the 1st leg of the quarter final with a thumping 6-1 victory at home over Porto, but of course the quality of tonight’s opposition will make this much more difficult. Munich also put 7 past Shakhtar Donetsk earlier in the competition, and they have a history of coming out on top against tonight’s visitors. In the same stage of the competition just 2 years ago, Bayern sent Barca to their heaviest ever European defeat with a staggering 7-0 aggregate scoreline (4-0 at the Allianz Arena).
This should ensure that Bayern Munich come out and try and take the game to Barcelona, but they will also be wary following last week’s swift counter attacks and the fact that a Barcelona goal would surely be the final nail in the coffin. Barcelona will want to keep hold of the ball much like they did at home, but Munich had defended this well until Lionel Messi’s moments of magic in quick succession of one another.
Barcelona have been in stunning form of late and will fancy their chances of lifting the trophy once again. They have won their last 8 fixtures, keeping 7 clean sheets in the process, and the play of Messi, Suarez and Neymar has had the entire world singing their praises. They have been the most convincing side in the competition so far, but Luis Enrique will know that tonight his team cannot get ahead of themselves and they still have a job to complete.
Pep Guardiola will be aware that his team needs a miracle and will be bitterly disappointed should he fall to his previous employers. Although they have had an impressive season, the German outfit have lost 4 games in a row and this will concern Spanish manger. At the very least he will want a spirited performance from his side, but he will still hold on to a slither of hope due to their prolific goalscoring in the competition so far.
The odds are stacked against the home side, but they will not go down without a fight and this should ensure that it is an intriguing encounter tonight as Bayern look to make history against a Barcelona side hungry for their first Champions League trophy since the 2010/11 season.
Key players Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben remain sidelined for the hosts tonight, with David Alaba, Sebastian Rode and Holger Badstuber also all unavailable.
Luis Enrique is expected to name the same side that won at home last week, having rested a number of players during their 2-0 victory at the weekend. Jeremy Mathieu is also available for selection having recovered from an Achilles injury.