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I’ll be watching Arsenal: Thomas Tuchel to avoid Bayer Leverkusen’s title push

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 12 Apr 2024

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Bayern Munich manager Thomas Tuchel said he will avoid Bayer Leverkusen securing the Bundesliga title on Sunday by watching Arsenal’s Premier League match against Aston Villa instead.

Xabi Alonso’s Leverkusen are on the brink of being crowned champions and host Werder Bremen on Sunday.

Even if Bayern beat Cologne at the Allianz Arena a day earlier, Leverkusen – 16 points clear with just six matches remaining – will take their first title by seeing off Bremen.

However, Tuchel, whose side host Cologne fresh from a pulsating 2-2 Champions League draw at Arsenal on Tuesday night, will have his attention elsewhere.

“I won’t be watching the Leverkusen game on Sunday,” he said. “I’ll watch Arsenal.”

The Champions League is the only trophy still up for grabs for the German giants following a disappointing domestic campaign.

And ahead of the quarter-final return leg in Munich on Wednesday, Tuchel has hinted he will rotate his side for the visit of Cologne.

“We’ve got several days between Cologne and Arsenal, but there’s the consideration to throw in some other players and make some changes,” said the former Chelsea manager, who is leaving Munich at the end of the season.

“If we make changes, then it’s more to give players some match rhythm for Wednesday and not to rest anybody.”

Leroy Sane is among those unlikely to feature on Saturday.

The former Manchester City winger impressed for Bayern at the Emirates on Tuesday night before he was substituted in the second half.

“It’s about how much pain he can tolerate,” added Tuchel of Sane.

“We geared everything towards him being able to play for Arsenal. He was an important factor there and played a great game.

“Since he showed a reaction, we’re focusing on him on Wednesday. The plan is for him to return on Sunday or Monday. But if he plays, he’ll show a reaction in his pubic bone again, which will remain the case for the time being.

“It’s clear what assets and talent the boy has. But we’ve been waiting for him to score a competitive goal since October. He got off to an outstanding start to the season, but he’s slowed down a bit.

“The expectations before the Arsenal first leg were huge and he delivered. We expect him to keep pushing himself, then he’ll be a key player for us.”

Tuchel will watch Saturday’s match from the stands after he was shown a fourth yellow card of the season in last weekend’s shock defeat to Heidenheim.

Cologne are four points from safety and Bayern are unbeaten in their last 19 meetings against their opponents on Saturday.

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