Bayern In The Box Seat

Image courtesy of rte.ie
Thomas Muller scored for Bayern in the first leg. Image courtesy of rte.ie
Bayern Munich  goes into the second leg of its UEFA Champions League quarter-final tie against Juventus  well placed to reach the final four in the competition for the third time in four seasons after scoring a 2-0  victory over the Italian club in Germany last week. Have won their past three home games in Europe, keeping a clean sheet in the process, Juventus will not have given up hope of keeping their European dreams alive.

After picking up yellow cards in the first leg, key men Arturo Vidal and Stephan Lichtsteiner are both suspended for this match, heaping additional responsibility on veteran midfielder Andrea Pirlo. Former Manchester City, Arsenal and Chelsea striker Nicolas Anelka has been ruled out with a calf injury, while Mirko Vucinic could replace Alessandro Matri up front after finding the back of the net twice in his side’s 2-1  league win over Pescara on the weekend.

Fresh from securing the Bundesliga title with more than a month of the season remaining courtesy of their 1-0  victory over Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday, Bayern will continue its quest for more silverware in Europe. Mario Mandzukic, Franck Ribery, Luiz Gustavo and Daniel van Buyten should all return to the starting lineup after being rested in on Saturday, but Toni Kroos’ season is over after suffering a season-ending injury in the first leg.

Juventus has won all five European quarter-finals that they have played against German opposition but face a stiff task keeping that record intact. They are unbeaten at home in the Champions League this season however and scored a 3-0  victory over defending champion Chelsea here during the group stage and will take confidence from that result. Bayern has won two of its four games away from home in Europe this season, including a 3-1 victory over Arsenal at the Emirates in the round of 16.

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