Tottenham have already reached the next round of the Champions League, but the match on Wednesday will give them an opportunity to right an earlier wrong. They travel to Germany to face Bayern Munich, the team that demolished them by a 7-2 score-line earlier in the competition. Despite their good start in the game, the Bundesliga champions were efficient in front of goal and the result was one of the final nails in the Mauricio Pochettino reign. After reaching the final of this competition last season, Spurs will be looking to compete again and a victory on Wednesday will give them confidence that they can.
Bayern Munich are going through a process of transition under Hansi Flick as they try to find a new permanent head coach. Niko Kovac was relieved of his duties since the first meeting with Tottenham and Pochettino is one of the names linked with the vacant post. Two losses in the Bundesliga over the last two weeks have left the German club in 7th position with their title defence more questionable by the week. They may have been dominant in the Champions League, but this is far from the best Bayern Munich team that has been seen in recent years.
Mourinho is in the process of rebuilding his reputation as a top level coach. Therefore, the Champions League is an important competition for him this season, especially as Tottenham’s place in next season’s competition is under threat. The weekend win over Burnley was imperious and highlighted the progress made since the managerial change was made. Spurs were clinical in attack and they managed to keep a crucial clean sheet. The performance should have given them a lot of confidence heading into the festive period. They will see an opportunity on Wednesday against a struggling Bayern Munich team.
Robert Lewandowski is the Champions League top scorer, but only two of his ten goals have come at home.
Dele Alli has been directly involved in seven goals in five games since Jose Mourinho took charge. He is the man in form for Tottenham.
Bayern Munich are having a very disappointing season, but their Polish striker continues to show that he is arguably the best number nine in world football. His goal-scoring consistency continues to propel Bayern Munich, as it has done in this season’s Champions League. He has scored ten goals in five games, which is incredible at this stage of the competition. In the previous meeting of these two clubs, he scored twice and outshone Harry Kane on that occasion. A lot will be written between the battle of the two number nines and the current competition top scorer will be keen to shine on Wednesday. He has only scored twice at home in the campaign and this will be an opportunity for him to add to his goal tally. Tottenham kept a clean sheet at the weekend, but there are still issues to exploit in the defence. In their current guise, Bayern need their star man to perform.
The South Korean international may not be written about as much as Dele Alli or Harry Kane, but there is an argument that he is the most important player in the current Tottenham team. That was evident last season, as he starred against Dortmund and Manchester City ties. Son Heung-min is dynamic and direct in the final third, which makes him a very dangerous weapon in away Champions League matches. He can create a goal or a chance out of nothing and his goal against Burnley underlined his threat. As a former Bundesliga player, Son always has a point to prove when he goes back to Germany and his record in a Spurs’ shirt is very good. Bayern are vulnerable at this time. Son has the ability to make a real difference, adding to his five goals in the competition.
- Corentin Tolisso and Jerome Boateng are both expected to be passed fit for the home side. There are no major injury concerns for Bayern Munich approaching this match.
- Jose Mourinho has indicated that he may play a weakened team, with Troy Parrott and Ryan Sessegnon on standby to start. Harry Winks is a doubt. None of the long-term absentees will be back for this game.
A lot depends on the team selected by Jose Mourinho. If Tottenham do play a weakened team, Bayern Munich will have enough to get an important victory. Although it means little in the context of this competition, it will boost the players following two league defeats. However, if Spurs look to attack Bayern, they could cause them real problems. A home win looks the safer bet.
Bayern Munich 3-1 Tottenham