Bayern Munich v Arsenal: Champions League match preview

A look ahead to tonight’s European encounter at the Allianz Arena

Arsenal certainly face a mammoth task to progress when they line up against the European champions on Tuesday night but they will be reinvigorated having secured an FA Cup semi-final spot thanks to a controlled and disciplined performance against Everton at the weekend. With Wigan conquering Manchester City, the Gunners are now heavy favourites to secure their first major trophy in nine years – providing everyone at Emirates Stadium with a timely confidence boost.

Mesut Ozil looked back to his early-season best against The Toffees, and Arsene Wenger will need his record-summer signing firing on all cylinders if his side are to overcome Pep Guardiola’s German juggernaut that is steam-rolling their way to yet another league crown. After his crucial penalty miss in the first leg, the 25-year-old Turkish-born playmaker never really recovered and has since been rested by Wenger in the league, but his superb finish and equally as good assist for teammate Olivier Giroud on Saturday has given everyone in the red half of north London renewed belief of an upset in Munich.

A repeat of last season’s impressive second-leg performance would see the Gunners force extra-time at least, but their defensive unit – which has been the base of their success this season – will need to be on their guard if they’re to stop the attacking riches that the German champions possess. Since bringing an end to his year-long sabbatical to take charge of Jupp Heynckes’ treble-winning record breakers, Guardiola has overseen an unbeaten campaign in the league that will undoubtedly end with a second consecutive Bundesliga crown – they’re a staggering 23 points clear of second-placed Borussia Dortmund.

However, becoming the first team to ever defend the Champions League should be their number one priority and they have so far proven they have the desire and determination as well as an abundance of quality that makes European glory yet again a very realistic possibility. Arsenal will simply have to put on their best-ever display in the competition if they’re to progress to a first quarter-final since 2010.

KICK-OFF: Tuesday, 7.45pm

PAST THREE MEETINGS…

2014: Arsenal 0-2 Bayern Munich (Kroos, Muller)

2013: Bayern Munich 0-2 Arsenal (Giroud, Koscielny)

2013: Arsenal (Podolski) 1-3 Bayern Munich (Kroos, Muller, Mandzukic)

STATS…

  • Bayern Munich set a Bundesliga record this weekend when they beat Wolfsburg 6-1. It was their 16 straight win in the German league
  • The German champions haven’t lost in the league for 16 months, a run of 49 matches
  • Arsenal have met Bayern seven times in the Champions League, winning two, drawing one and losing four of them
  • However, they won on their last visit to Munich – securing their first win over the Germans away from home
  • Munich have not lost at home domestically since October 2012, but they lost their last encounter on home soil to English opposition when Manchester City came from two behind to win 3-2 in this year’s group stage

ODDS…

Bayern to win: 1.33

Arsenal to win: 10.5

Draw: 6.2

CLASSIC MOMENT/MATCH

Last season’s 2-0 triumph at the Allianz Arena may have signalled the end of Arsenal’s Champions League hopes for another season but the result and performance provided Arsene Wenger’s men with the impetus to kick on in the league and finish above bitter rivals Tottenham. Olivier Giroud gave the visitors the perfect start when he slotted home after just three minutes, but the German’s refused to panic and were relatively untroubled until Laurent Koscielny’s 85-minute header set up a grandstand finish. Sadly it wasn’t to be for the Gunners, but memories of that gutsy display will stand them in good stead for this week’s tie.

READ MORE: 10 reasons for Arsenal to be optimistic of progress
Wenger pleads for 'fair chance' from referee
Important Ozil gives Arsenal boost
Flamini questions character of recent Arsenal sides
Hoeness tax fraud only cloud on Bayern horizon
If Bayern score early, it's 'probably not worth watching'
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain confident Arsenal can overturn two-goal deficit
Arjen Robben claims tie is not over

TV: Tuesday 7.45pm, ITV

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

The long walk west: they fled war in Syria, only to get held up in Hungary – now hundreds of refugees have set off on foot for Austria

They fled war in Syria...

...only to get stuck and sidetracked in Hungary
From The Prisoner to Mad Men, elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series

Title sequences: From The Prisoner to Mad Men

Elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series. But why does the art form have such a chequered history?
Giorgio Armani Beauty's fabric-inspired foundations: Get back to basics this autumn

Giorgio Armani Beauty's foundations

Sumptuous fabrics meet luscious cosmetics for this elegant look
From stowaways to Operation Stack: Life in a transcontinental lorry cab

Life from the inside of a trucker's cab

From stowaways to Operation Stack, it's a challenging time to be a trucker heading to and from the Continent
Kelis interview: The songwriter and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell and crying over potatoes

Kelis interview

The singer and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell
Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea