Arsenal’s European campaign so far has been anything but predictable. They lost 2-1 at group minnows Zagreb in their opener after their front man Olivier Giroud saw red before the break and then followed that up with an embarrassing 3-2 home defeat to Olympiakos. When hopes of qualification looked impossible, Arsenal did the unthinkable and beat European giants Bayern Munich 2-0 at The Emirates. They face the German champions again this week and Arsenal will probably need a point if they are to progress.
Arsenal have travelled to sides ranked in the top-three (we currently have Munich third behind Barca and Madrid respectively) five times since 2008/09 and they’ve suffered Loss/Loss (HT/FT) doubles on three occasions, though the other two matches were against Bayern – a 2-0 win in 2012/13 and a 1-1 draw in 2013/14 both of which came in Last 16 second legs.
Bayern’s home record in this competition since the start of last season reads: W7-D0-L0 F27-A3 despite welcoming Barcelona, Man City, Roma, Shakhtar and Porto in that sample. They’ve also won 16 of their last 17 home group stage matches with 14 Win/Wins doubles – their only failure came in a 3-2 defeat to Man City in 2013/14 when they had already guaranteed qualification (and still won the group). With Olympiakos likely to move to nine points with a win at home to Zagreb first place isn’t guaranteed for Bayern yet and they’ll be keen to avenge their defeat in North London a fortnight ago.
Arsenal have impressed domestically this season but their injury list remains lengthy. While the likes of Cazorla and Ozil are great when the Gunners are on top they won’t have much of the ball in the Olympic Stadium and their reluctance to track back will probably be fatal. Aaron Ramsey’s work ethic will be sorely missed and Munich should win comfortably. Bayern have racked up 24 goals in their six home games in the Bundesliga so far despite already hosting their three ‘nearest’ likely challengers in Leverkusen, Wolfsburg and Dortmund. They won all three games by at least three goals and a similar outcome wouldn’t shock here.
To find out more about Football Form Labs, click here