The final eight of the Champions League will continue on Wednesday, and we’ll feature one of the more marquee showdowns, as Paris Saint-Germain will visit German giants Bayern Munich in Leg 1 action.
For those unfamiliar, the quarter-finals span over two legs, one home and one away match for each team – with the squad possessing the most total goals on aggregate, advancing into the semis.
Both PSG and Bayern are clearly European giants, currently sitting atop their respective domestic leagues. PSG are littered with offensive talent, while Bayern enter as the reigning Champions League title holders from last campaign.
Though Bayern enter with fresh injury and illness concerns, this remains a very in-form and well-organized side under manager Hansi Flick. The Bavarians are dominating the Bundesliga once again in 2021, and the depth of their squad has allowed for greatness.
PSG enter in confusing form, despite their immense talent. A 1-0 loss to Lille over this past weekend has tightened their grasp on Ligue One, and the Parisians continued a disturbing trend of not playing well against top opposition. Against Bayern, it’s a watershed moment for this group, and many will be looking for a statement performance.
This has all the makings of an instant classic, given all of the talent that will be on display from both sides. PSG and Bayern Munich both have very realistic title aspirations, and the fact they are meeting this early in the competition is admittedly a bit flawed. That said, it will produce excellent quality soccer, and there are great betting opportunities available. For more on that, as well as a tactical preview and analysis, continue reading on beneath the posted odds for our take on this epic quarter-final showdown.
Bayern Munich vs. PSG Betting Odds:
Bayern Munich (-105)
Paris Saint-Germain (+280)
Bayern Munich -0.5 (-105)
Paris Saint-Germain +0.5 (-105)
Over 3 (-110)
Under 3 (-110)
*Betting odds provided by BetOnline.ag
Bayern Munich vs. PSG Pick:
Perhaps one of Hansi Flick’s biggest concerns for his Bayern Munich side will be their inability to play without their top goal-scorer in striker Robert Lewandowski. The Polish international was injured playing for his country and likely remains out for another month. Despite Bayern’s talented attacking depth – it most certainly is a big loss for the Bavarians.
Adding insult to that injury, it was announced earlier this week that talented midfielder Serge Gnabry will also be out, after testing positive for COVID-19. Despite these crushing losses, don’t expect too many changes to Bayern’s style or formation. They have excellent squad depth for a reason, and look for the pacy Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting to fill Lewandowski’s void as the lone striker up top against his former side.
Bayern will do well and look to control the bulk of possession in their 4-2-3-1 formation. Benjamin Pavard and Alphonso Davies are excellent fullbacks, who consistently push the pace with dashing runs from the flank, and excellent crosses into the opposition’s box. In attack, Thomas Muller, Leroy Sane, and Kingsley Coman are as creative and skilled a trio as there is in international football, and should work well to provide excellent service and chances at goal.
Expect PSG to try and counteract Bayern’s time and space by implementing a pretty aggressive pressing system, to try and force their midfield into turnovers. When Bayern gets comfortable, they’ve proven to be lethal in attack – and the Parisians will hope to disrupt that.
Look for manager Mauricio Pocchetino to counter with a 4-2-3-1 formation of his own, with Neymar heading the line. He’ll be supported by arguably soccer’s top talent in Frenchman Kylian Mbappe, who will surely be a handle for Bayern’s back-line to keep in check. Mbappe possesses an elite blend of skill and speed from a wide position, and limiting his space will be key for Bayern when dealing with PSG’s counter.
Where PSG will likely struggle though is deeper in their holding midfield spots, as they look to nullify Bayern’s creative passing and finishing abilities. Marco Verratti remains out due to COVID-19, and other first-team options are still battling injuries. As a result, expect PSG to turn to Ander Herrera and Idrissa Gueye in those two positions. While that duo is capable, they remain untested and it’s quite the gamble to task them with the tall order of keeping Bayern’s attack in check.
Expect a wide-open game, where both defensive units and midfield groups struggle to keep each other’s front-four attacks from scoring and generating consistent chances. Bayern has big questions in attack entering Wednesday’s clash, while PSG boasts a decisive attack but will need to get regular service. As a result, look for a wager on ‘Both Teams to Score’ and for PSG to respond with an outing that finally matches their potential. Back the French side to keep this match close, and go toe-to-toe with the Germans, as +0.5 to either win or draw on PSG should mark a +EV wager.