Bayern Munich vs PSG preview: Lewandowski absent

Bayern Munich vs PSG preview: Lewandowski absent

Team news, stats, kick-off time ahead of Bayern Munich vs Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League on Wednesday.

Team news

Bayern Munich are without striker Robert Lewandowski, who has been ruled out of Wednesday’s first leg with a knee injury.

Lewandowski, who will be joined on the sidelines by Corentin Tolisso and Douglas Costa, is also doubtful for the second leg on April 13.

Bayern have Jerome Boateng and Alphonso Davies available again after the pair missed the weekend Bundesliga win at RB Leipzig through suspension.

But midfielder Marc Roca has been ruled out, while winger Serge Gnabry has tested positive for coronavirus.

17 March 2021, Bavaria, Munich: Football: Champions League, Bayern Munich - Lazio Roma, knockout round, round of 16, second leg at Allianz Arena. Alphonso Davies of Munich is on the pitch. Photo by: Sven Hoppe/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images

Alphonso Davies is available

Paris Saint-Germain are without the suspended Leandro Paredes and are sweating over the fitness of midfielder Daniel Pereira.

Marco Verratti and Alessandro Florenzi will sit out the first-leg tie after returning positive coronavirus tests.

Flick wary of Neymar, Mbappe on break

Kylian Mbappe's first-leg hattrick has put PSG in command

Kylian Mbappe will hope to help PSG avenge defeat to Bayern in last season’s final

The two sides met in last year’s Champions League final with Bayern winning the trophy but Flick insisted he was wary of a side under new stewardship in Mauricio Pochettino – in particular, the speed of Neymar and Kylian Mbappe.

“Paris are a new team with a new coach,” said Flick. “I don’t think that game matters anymore. We want to reach the semi-finals and the final. That is our aim.

“They have a solid defence, a very good goalkeeper, but up front they have enormous quality. If we lose possession then we have to stop them quickly. We also have to put them under pressure early.”

Poch bullish: We’re here to win

Pochettino’s side slumped to a 1-0 home defeat to Lille in the league last time out but the former Tottenham boss was in a bullish mood about his side’s chances in Europe.

“We’re playing the champions of Europe and of the world. We respect them, but we have faith in our ability and we’ve come here to win,” he said.

“Bayern are a very well-organised team, playing with a high defensive line and with attacking players able to win a game individually. We will have to find the right balance, not overcommit and be careful not to lose the ball in dangerous areas.

“People talk a lot about Neymar and Mbappé, but the 11 players I decide to put out there tomorrow will be trusted to do the work needed for us to win. Last season was a final. This is different, it’s a two-legged tie.”

How to follow

Follow live text commentary of Bayern Munich vs Paris Saint-Germain through our dedicated live blog across Sky Sports’ digital platforms.

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  • This will be the 10th UEFA Champions League meeting between Bayern Munich and Paris SG (four Munich wins, five Paris wins previously) and only the second in the knockout phase, after last season’s final – a 1-0 Bayern Munich win.
  • Bayern Munich have only lost more UEFA Champions League matches against Real Madrid (10) than Paris SG (5), while Paris’ five wins against Munich are their most against any opponent in the competition.
  • Bayern Munich have won their last three home UEFA Champions League games against Paris SG, since losing 1-0 in their first home game in November 1994 at the OIympiastadion, with George Weah scoring the winner.
  • Paris SG have only failed to score in one of their last 43 games in the UEFA Champions League, with that coming in a 0-1 defeat in last season’s final. Since the start of the 2016-17 campaign, only Bayern Munich (2.8) have averaged more goals per game than Paris SG (2.5) in the competition.
  • Bayern Munich are unbeaten in their last 19 games in the UEFA Champions League (W18 D1) and could become only the second team in the competition’s history to go 20 consecutive games without losing, after Manchester United (25 between 2007 and 2009).
  • This is the third time Paris SG have drawn the reigning champions of the UEFA Champions League in the knockout stages, losing both legs on both previous occasions: the 1994-95 semi-final against AC Milan and 2017-18 last 16 against Real Madrid.
  • Paris SG manager Mauricio Pochettino’s only previous UEFA Champions League match against Bayern Munich was with Spurs in October 2019, losing 7-2. The record for goals conceded in a manager’s first two games against an opponent in the competition is 12 – Aleksandr Yermakovich vs Shakhtar Donetsk and Brendan Rodgers vs Paris SG.
  • Kylian Mbappe has been directly involved in 35 goals in 33 games for Paris SG in the UEFA Champions League (19 goals, 16 assists), while he’s scored six in seven games in the competition this season – already his joint-best goal tally in a single campaign (also 6 in 2016-17).
  • The two players with the most ball carries with a take-on in the UEFA Champions League this season are PSG duo Neymar and Kylian Mbappe (29 each), while Mbappe has had the most ball carries ending with a shot (11).
  • Bayern Munich will be missing Robert Lewandowski, who has scored in 10 of his 13 games in the UEFA Champions League under Hans-Dieter Flick, with the Pole’s 15 goals under Flick being the most of any player in the competition since the manager took charge in November 2019.

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