Spotify Camp Nou forms the backdrop for Wednesday’s mouth-watering Champions League match-up between Barcelona and Bayern Munich.
Following a topsy-turvy 3-3 home draw with Inter Milan in the previous round, the Catalan heavyweights are no longer in control of their promotion bid.
Not even avenging a 2-0 defeat in the reverse fixture against runaway Group C leaders Bayern would suffice to fire Barcelona past the Italians, who boast a superior head-to-head record.
However, Xavi Hernandez’s men need to hold up their end of the bargain and beat the Bavarians while hoping for Viktoria Plzen to play down the odds at Giuseppe Meazza.
Going into this fixture, current La Liga runners-up have won back-to-back home league matches by 3+ goals ‘to nil,’ notably scoring precisely three first-half goals on each occasion.
There’s nothing you can take away from Barcelona’s jaw-dropping performances over the past seven days as they sunk Villarreal and Athletic Bilbao, with Robert Lewandowski stealing the show.
After notching up a quick-fire first-half brace against the Yellow Submarine, he was on the scoresheet against Bilbao to set himself up nicely for the visit of his former employers.
Bayern eased past Group C minnows Plzen 4-2 last time out, thereby maintaining their 100% win ratio in the so-called ‘group of death’ and claiming their place in the knock-outs with two games to spare.
Despite experiencing an underwhelming Bundesliga start by their standards, the perennial German champions have seemingly hit their stride, and knocking them off their perch won’t be easy.
A couple of unanswered first-half goals handed Bayern a comfortable 2-0 league win at TSG Hoffenheim last weekend, stretching their winning streak in all competitions to four games.
Heavily fancied to join Bayern on the road to the Champions League knock-out stages before the start of the season, Barcelona now stare down the barrel of consecutive group phase eliminations for the second time in club history.
While the odds back the Blaugrana for success in this clash of titans, Xavi can ill-afford to overlook his side’s poor run of consecutive European home defeats to German visitors.
Lewandowski could be Barcelona’s saviour after clocking up a whopping 52 goals in 53 home appearances in the Champions League, including five for the Catalans this term.
Bayern could beat Barcelona twice in the same Champions League season for the fourth time, with the only remaining side to accomplish that feat being Dynamo Kyiv.
Julian Nagelsmann’s men have enjoyed an uplift in away form in the run-up to this road trip, going from consecutive matches without winning outside the Allianz Arena (D1, L1) to three straight multi-goal margin wins.
One of the architects of Bayern’s improvement away from home has been Leroy Sane.
The German winger has already racked up five goals in the Champions League this season, including his deadlock-breaker against Barcelona in Munich.
Barcelona vs Bayern Munich Potential Line-ups
Barcelona (4-3-3): Marc-Andre ter Stegen; Hector Bellerin, Jules Kounde, Eric Garcia, Marcos Alonso; Frenkie de Jong, Sergio Busquets, Pedri; Ousmane Dembele, Robert Lewandowski, Gavi.
Bayern Munich (4-2-3-1): Sven Ulreich; Benjamin Pavard, Dayot Upamecano, Matthijs de Ligt, Alphonso Davies; Joshua Kimmich, Leon Goretzka; Kingsley Coman, Jamal Musiala, Serge Gnabry; Sadio Mane.
How to Watch?
Barcelona vs Bayern, alongside all other matches in Europe’s most prestigious club competition this season, is available to watch online via Champions League live streams.
And if you are interested in attending a future UCL game, see our Champions League tickets page for more information.
Barcelona vs Bayern Munich Prediction
Given Barcelona’s impressive eight-game unbeaten home record this season (W6, D2), it’s hard to back Bayern to silence Camp Nou, especially as they don’t need to win at all costs.
But a high-scoring affair could be the order of the day, with both sides boasting formidable frontlines.
Barcelona 2-2 Bayern Munich
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