Liverpool face a Bayern side in terrifying form – can they deliver?
Does ‘mouth-watering’ even describe this tie? The first-leg between Liverpool and Bayern Munich in their Champions League last-16 clash may have lacked goals, but it has left things tantalisingly poised as Jurgen Klopp’s men head to the Allianz Arena.
Bayern’s failure to score an away goal may prove hugely decisive – if Liverpool net first Bayern will require two – but the hosts are in devastatingly good form in the Bundesliga: 12 wins from their last 13 (whilst scoring 39 goals) has seen them leapfrog Borussia Dortmund in top spot.
One win and four goals in their last six away games is becoming a concern for Jurgen Klopp, but I see defence being the name of the game on Wednesday. Bayern are scoring goals for fun, but Liverpool have the joint-second-best defence in Europe’s top five leagues (level with Atletico Madrid and Juventus on 17 goals conceded; behind PSG on 15), and Klopp will hope his back line remain as solid as ever.
This should be an even cagier match than the first. Bayern will dominate the ball, while Liverpool will look to play on the break, but the spectre of an away goal won’t have gone unnoticed by Niko Kovac, so it’s unlikely his side will take too many undue risks at 0-0.
Under 2.5 goals at 11/10 looks a solid price.
Bayern Munich v Liverpool [Total Goals Over/Under]
There’s always decent value in stats-based bets, which is why I’m backing under 9.5 corners at 23/18.
It wouldn’t surprise me if both sides tip-toed around for large periods of the match, which is naturally unlikely to yield a high number of corners.
Furthermore, Liverpool concede an average of 3.37 corners-per-match in the Premier League, while Bayern’s corner concession rate is just 2.00 per match.
Bayern Munich v Liverpool [Total Corners]
For a 13/1 longshot, I’m backing the score after 90 minutes to be 0-0.
This is the only scoreline that can force extra-time and penalties, and Liverpool’s stuttering attack on the road – combined with their watertight defence – may force a repeat of what we saw at Anfield three weeks ago.