Bayern Munich vs Chelsea preview: Young Blues fighting a losing battle in Bavaria
By Matt Hill
8 August 2020, 07:56
Chelsea enjoyed their greatest European night against Bayern Munich back in 2012 — but a repeat of those celebrations appears a forlorn hope this evening.
Having been picked apart by their phenomenal opponents at Stamford Bridge in February, the Blues head into the second leg of their Champions League last-16 clash 3-0 down.
It was a clinical Serge Gnabry brace and a Robert Lewandowski finish that secured an emphatic win for the visitors in London.
But the goal count could have been even higher had Bayern not found Chelsea keeper Willy Caballero in such stellar form.
Given how one-sided the first meeting was, Frank Lampard’s men will need to put in a much-improved performance if they are to keep this tie competitive for long.
The restart of the English domestic campaign went well for the Blues, with eight wins from 12 outings in all competitions and a top-four finish in the Premier League.
Their FA Cup final loss to London rivals Arsenal was a disappointing setback and knocks suffered in the match by the departing Pedro and talisman Christian Pulisic dampened spirits further.
The duo are joined on the slidelines by Cesar Azpilicueta and Ruben Loftus-Cheek, leaving Lampard to consider his options.
To make matters worse, midfield general Jorginho and experienced left-back Marcos Alonso are suspended, while doubts remain over the fitness of Willian and N’Golo Kante.
Bayern swept to another dominating Bundesliga success and are on a 17-game winning streak in all competitions.
Hansi Flick’s side have not tasted a competitive defeat since December 2019 and are considered among the favourites to lift the Champions League trophy later this month.
Star striker Lewandowski has 11 goals already in the competition and will fancy his chances of adding to that tally if selected.
Chelsea are winless in their last seven away Champions League matches in the knockout stages (drawing four and losing three) since a 1-0 win at Benfica in March 2012 in the quarter-finals.
Bayern have won their first seven Champions League games this season, scoring 27 goals and conceding just five.
All six of Gnabry’s Champions League goals for Bayern this season have come against English teams (four against Tottenham and two against Chelsea).