Prediction: Bayern Munich to Win 2-1
Bayern Munich will be aiming to extend the so far perfect defence of their UEFA Champions League crown as they travel to Austrian champions Red Bull Salzburg on Tuesday evening.
The German giants have been in imperious form in recent weeks, with those results being replicated on the European stage, and barring a huge shock at the Red Bull Arena, Hansi Flick’s men should claim another victory.
Red Bull Salzburg
Heading into just their second-ever UEFA Champions League campaign having been eliminated at the group stages last season, the Austrian outfit were certainly handed another tricky placing. Drawn alongside the likes of Bayern Munich, Spanish giants Atletico Madrid and Lokomotiv Moscow, Jesse Marsch’s men have so far only claimed one point in their opening two matches, that coming in the entertaining 2-2 draw against the Russian side. That solitary point probably does not do their performances justice though. They almost gave Atleti a huge scare at the Wanda Metropolitano, claiming a 2-1 lead, before a second-half brace from Joao Felix turned the game around for Diego Simeone’s men. Salzburg will certainly look to their excellent home record for inspiration against Bayern on Tuesday evening. Die Roten Bullen have played five matches on home soil this season, winning four of those and scoring an eye-watering 21 goals in the process.
A huge miss for Salzburg ahead of the match is set to be striker Patson Daka. He missed the weekend thumping of WSG Tirol and is unlikely to be fit for the match. His absence is surely going to be felt having netted 12 goals and provided five assists in just 11 games so far this season. Meanwhile, Mergim Berisha should return to the starting line-up having been on the bench at the weekend. One man who will certainly hope to have an impact against Bayern is Dominik Szoboszlai. The youngster has netted in both of his Champions League appearances this campaign.
Hansi Flick’s troops will certainly be in a confident mood as they travel East to Salzburg. The German champions have won their last eight matches in all competitions. As a matter of fact, the only time that they have failed to taste victory during the 2020/21 campaign was in the 4-1 hammering at the hands of Hoffenheim. Their brilliant form has also carried over into Europe. The reining European champions have won their opening two matches of the current season – the first being a 4-0 thumping of Atleti, with the second being a narrow 2-1 success against Lokomotiv. Another victory on Tuesday really would but them firmly on track to qualify for the next round already. The three points would also extend their highly impressive run of 13 victories in the UEFA Champions League, which is the longest such run in the history of the competition.
There are a few defensive casualties for Bayern ahead of the game. Left-back Alphonso Davies is out for the foreseeable future having torn an ankle ligament. Meanwhile, centre-half Niklas Sule is ruled out for the match having received a positive coronavirus test. Robert Lewandowski, Leon Goretzka and Lucas Hernandez were left out for the weekend’s win against Koln and could all return alongside the likes of David Alaba and Kingsley Coman.
Key Facts To Consider
- Bayern Munich have only lost one game against Austrian opposition throughout their history (W5, D2, L1)
- Red Bull Salzburg are undefeated in their last 15 competitive home matches
- Salzburg have not kept a clean sheet in a Champions League game since a 0-0 draw against Crvena Zvezda over two years ago
- However, the hosts have scored at least two goals in each of their last four matches in the competition (including qualifiers)
- Bayern have netted 17 goals in just eight games against Austrian opposition
Most will be predicted that this match will be an absolute cruise for Bayern and on any normal week, that could be the case. However, with Borussia Dortmund awaiting the European and German champions this weekend, Flick might well be tempted a few of his stars for the trip to Austria. Considering how Salzburg have performed in the Champions League this season, that will definitely give them encouragement. Bayern should still have enough to win but it won’t be quite as straight forward as expected.
Prediction: Bayern Munich to Win 2-1
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