Bayern Munich vs Chelsea: Preview & Recommended Bet
It’s Champions League final time on Saturday evening with Bayern Munich hosting Chelsea at their own Allianz Arena. Here is a preview with recommended top bet.
Champions League Final
Bayern Munich v Chelsea, Saturday, 19 May 2012, 20:45
Recommended Bet = under 2.5 goals, best odds 1.89 @ Betfair
Champions League final time on Saturday evening with Bayern Munich hosting Chelsea at their own Allianz Arena. It may seem that Jupp Heynckes men have been handed a major advantage, playing what is effectively a home match to determine Europe’s elite club this season, and the odds with TAB online betting reflect this.
However, this will bring added expectation and pressure to a situation that will already be filled with nervous tension. It could produce a very cagey affair if there is no early goal for the hosts, as Chelsea are likely to sit back and play to their own counter-attacking strengths, even more so than if the final were held in a neutral venue.
Chelsea’s away form in the Champions League has been excellent since Roberto Di Matteo took charge of the team in mid-March; to only concede 2 goals at the Nou Camp after playing with 10 men for over an hour was impressive, and in the quarter final they managed to keep a clean sheet at high scoring Benfica before progressing to face Barcelona.
Bayern are very similar to Barca in that they like to dominate possession, while Chelsea will undoubtedly hold a very deep defensive line to counter the threat of Bayern’s pace and trickery on the wings in the form of Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben. The Dutchman will have a tough time getting the better of Chelsea left-back Ashley Cole though; the England defender is consistently one of Chelsea’s best performers when it comes to the big occasions.
Chelsea have also shown, in the Premier League, that when they travel away to face teams full of high quality players who like to play the ball quickly and keep possession (Arsenal and Tottenham), they revert to a very defensive formation and mentality. At White Hart Lane they grabbed a 1-1 draw while at the Emirates Stadium the game finished goalless.
Bayern Munich have produced a clean sheet in half of their Champions League games this season, precisely because of their ability to keep hold of the ball. They have also recorded an under 2.5 goal result in 9 out of the 14 matches.
In the Bundesliga, there have also been some low-scoring matches when Bayern have faced a top 4 side who have come to the Allianz Arena to deliberately try to negate the threat of Bayern and play on the counter-attack (see below).
The two biggest stars of the night in Munich, and potentially the main reason this game could end in under 2.5 goals being scored, is the respective goalkeepers of both clubs.
Manuel Neuer’s first season as Bayern’s No1 has been a resounding success, culminating in the penalty shoot-out heroics in the semi-final against Real Madrid, and proving him to be one of the world’s best, alongside Iker Casillas and Gigi Buffon.
Chelsea’s Petr Cech must also be considered on the shortlist of Europe’s finest Keepers, and he may need to be at his very best to keep the Bayern attack at bay on Saturday night.
By Phil Rushton, Football Betting Master
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