Bayern Munich vs Koln preview

December 15, 2011
By: Frank Beresford

Struggling Koln arrive to Alianz Arena hoping to put a dent into Bayern’s title hopes, with former Bavarian Lukas Podolski likely to be the biggest threat to home defenders.

Jupp Heynckes’ side enter this clash high on confidence, after back to back Bundesliga wins over Werder Bremen and Stuttgart, which saw them create a three-point cushion at the top.

The Bavarians are determined to keep their advantage before the winter break, with Stan James offering by far the biggest price on home win, 1.18 (9/50).

Taking into account that Bayern scored at least three goals in every one of their last six home wins in Bundesliga, odds of 1.57 (4/7) offered by bet365 on Bayern to score over 2.5 goals do look tempting.

With Breno and Bastian Schweinsteiger still on the sidelines, coach Heynckes is unlikely to make any changes to the side that beat Stuttgart last weekend.

Probable starting line-up (4-2-3-1): Neuer – Rafinha, Van Buyten, Badstuber, Lahm – Kroos, Tymoschuk – Robben, Muller, Ribery – Gomez.

Koln may have been pretty inconsistent this season, but they currently sit in mid table, six points clear of the bottom three, so the Billy Goats can be satisfied with the first part of the season.

If it hadn’t been for magnificent Lukas Podolski, Stale Solbakken’s side would probably now be deep in the relegation zone, so they need to do everything they can to keep the Germany international at RheinEnergie Stadion.

That is looking increasingly unlikely after the forward scored 14 goals in 15 Bundesliga games, and at odds of 5.00 (4/1) offered by 888sport, backing Podolski to score against his former club looks like a great bet.

The Billy Goats have been struggling on the travels this season, having picked up just one point from last four away games, so they cannot be trusted to surprise Bayern at Alianz Arena.

First team regulars Andrezinho, Petit, Chihi and Novakovic remain sidelined and that is likely to damage Koln’s chances to producing an upset in Munich.

Probable starting line-up (4-4-1-1): Rensing – Brecko, Geromel, Jemal, Sereno – Clemens, Matuschyk, Riehter, Peszko – Jajalo – Podolski.

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