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Champions League preview: Bayern Munich vs Arsenal & Man City vs Real Madrid

The first leg fixtures of the Champions League quarter-finals were absolutely breathtaking and it is likely to be the same once again in the second legs

The first leg fixtures of the Champions League quarter-finals were absolutely breathtaking and it is likely to be the same once again in the second leg this week.

Atletico Madrid came away victorious against Borussia Dortmund by 2-1 but the return leg is in the Signal Iduna Park so BVB will be hoping to turn the game around by taking home advantage.

On the other hand, Barcelona earned the best result among the other teams as they won the first leg away from home 3-2 against PSG. Although the tie hasn’t been over and things could change in the second leg, the Blaugrana would be confident to reach the semi-final by avoiding defeat at Olimpic Lluis Companys. Camp Nou is currently undergoing renovations so the Catalan giants have been playing in this stadium this season.

Bayern Munich vs Arsenal

After drawing 2-2 in the first leg at the Emirates Stadium, Bayern Munich will welcome Arsenal at the Allianz Arena in the Champions League quarter-final on Wednesday night.

The Gunners opened the account courtesy of a brilliant Bukayo Saka strike early on in the game but the visitors came back brilliantly and scored two quick-fire goals before the interval. However, substitute Leandro Trossard’s late strike helped the Gunners come away with a draw from this fixture.

Bayern Munich came into this game following a few poor results so Arsenal were the favourite to win at home. But, the Bavarian club displayed a promising performance and stopped Mikel Arteta’s side from performing at their best. There were controversies as both sides thought they should’ve had a penalty.

So, now having drawn in the away leg, Bayern Munich’s chance of qualifying for the next round has increased as they would be backing themselves to win the second leg by taking advantage of the home support.

In addition, having endured a disappointing 2-0 defeat against Aston Villa in the Premier League last weekend, Arsenal could lack a bit of confidence before this game.

Team news

Bayern Munich don’t have many injury problems at the moment but they will be without Serge Gnabry – who managed to put his name on the score-sheet in the first leg – as he has been ruled out for the next few weeks due to an injury problem. In addition, Sacha Boey, Bouna Sarr and Tarek Buchmann are all set to remain sidelined for this fixture owing to their respective problems.

Kingsley Coman sustained an issue last time out and as a result, he won’t be able to feature in the upcoming few games. So, he isn’t in contention to feature in this encounter.

On the other hand, Arteta has found himself in a promising situation injury-wise at the moment as the Gunners have no injury problems. The only player – who isn’t available is Jurrien Timber.

However, Mikel Arteta has revealed after the game against Aston Villa that Martin Odegaard picked up an issue in that game so he is in doubt ahead of this fixture.

Predicted line-up

Thomas Tuchel is set to continue with Manual Neuer in the goalkeeping role and in front of the German, Eric Dier and Matthijs de Ligt might be the centre-back pairing, commencing Joshua Kimmich and Alphonso Davies in the fullback positions.

Konrad Laimer should continue alongside Leon Goretzka in the midfield pivot position, starting Thomas Muller in the number ten role. Jamal Musiala is expected to be in the left-wing position with Leroy Sane on the opposite side. Kane is set to be in the centre-forward role.

Expected Bayern Munich line-up vs Arsenal

Neuer; Kimmich, De Ligt, Dier, Davies; Laimer, Goretzka, Muller; Musiala, Kane, Sane

As for Arsenal, Arteta is expected to go with the same team that started last week so David Raya should continue between the sticks. William Saliba and Gabriel Magalhaes could be the centre-back pairing for the hosts, while Ben White and Jakub Kiwior might be the two fullbacks.

Jorginho is likely to commence in the holding midfield position and alongside the Italian, Declan Rice should be in the engine room, pushing Martin Odegaard in the attacking midfield position.

Saka is expected to continue in the left-wing role, while Gabriel Martinelli should be on the opposite side. Kai Havertz could be leading the line for Arsenal at the Allianz Arena.

Expected Arsenal line-up vs Bayern Munich

Raya; White, Saliba, Gabriel, Kiwior; Jorginho, Rice, Odegaard; Saka, Martinelli, Havertz

Prediction

The tie is nicely poised at the moment so it’s very difficult to predict who will come up on top in this fixture. However, considering Bayern Munich are at home and the Gunners haven’t been able to replicate their Premier League form in the Champions League, the hosts could be a slight favourite to reach the next round.

However, Arsenal will be desperate to show the world that they can perform at their best in Europe as well so they might eventually win this encounter. Bayern Munich 1-2 Arsenal

Manchester City vs Real Madrid

Real Madrid will be travelling to the Etihad Stadium to face off against Manchester City in the Champions League quarter-final second leg on Wednesday.

Real Madrid only managed to come away with a 3-3 draw in the first leg at the Estadio Santiago Bernabéu and Los Blancos were reportedly unhappy as they couldn’t win the game. Now, they will have to win in the Etihad Stadium to reach the next round where they were thrashed 4-0 last campaign.

So, the Citizens will feel confident to beat the record European Champions in this game by taking the home advantage. Despite the frustrating first leg result, Real Madrid tickets have sold out for the trip to Manchester so there will be a passionate away support backing the Spaniard’s at the Etihad.

Team news

Man City struggled with a few injury problems as Kyle Walker, Nathan Ake and John Stones were all out in recent games. But, Ake and Walker were among the substitutes in the last game after recovering from their respective problems so the duo is in contention to feature on Wednesday.

Phil Foden limped off in last weekend’s game versus Real Madrid but was among the substitutes last weekend so, he should be ready to start in this game.

On the other hand, Real Madrid have struggled with several injury problems throughout the season with most of those at their back. So, Thibaut Courtois and David Alaba aren’t in contention to feature in this encounter due to their respective problems but Eder Militao has returned to full fitness after recovering from his knee problem so he could feature in this game.

Predicted line-up

Ederson has returned from his injury in the last game so he is set to be between the sticks for the hosts, while Walker, Ruben Diaz, Manuel Akanji and Josko Gvardiol are set to be the back four.

Rodri will return to the starting eleven after a breather midweek. In front of the Spaniard, Kevin De Bruyne and Phil Foden could be the two attacking midfielders. Jack Grealish and Bernardo Silva would be the two wingers, while Erling Haaland would be leading the line for the hosts.

Expected Man City line-up vs Real Madrid

Ederson; Walker, Diaz, Akanji, Gvardiol; Rodri, De Bruyne, Foden; Silva, Haaland, Grealish

As for Real Madrid, Andriy Lunin will be in goal, while Dani Carvajal, Antonio Rudiger, Aurelien Tchouameni and Ferland Mendy should be the back four for the visitors.

Toni Kroos is likely to be the holding midfielder and on either side of him, Eduardo Camavinga and Federico Valverde could commence, pushing Jude Bellingham in the attacking midfield position. Vinicius Jr and Rodrygo should be the two strikers for Los Blancos in this encounter.

Expected Real Madrid line-up vs Man City

Lunin; Carvajal, Rudiger, Tchouameni, Mendy; Kroos, Camavinga, Valverde, Bellingham; Vinicius, Rodrygo

Prediction

Man City are a formidable side at home so it is likely that the defending champions will reach the next round by beating the record European championship in this fixture. Man City 3-1 Real Madrid

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