Reigning European Champions Bayern Munich get their UEFA Champions League defence underway as they meet Atletico Madrid on matchday one of the group stage on Wednesday evening.
Hansi Flick’s men, who lifted their sixth European Cup at the conclusion of last season against French giants, welcome the Spaniards as one of the favourites to taste glory once again this season. They can be backed at odds of 4/1 with William Hill to win the competition. Meanwhile, Diego Simeone’s Atleti begin this campaign aiming to lift their debut Champions League crown having only reached the quarter-finals last time out. The three-time finalists are available at a price of 22/1 this season.
Unsurprisingly, Bayern have been almost irrepressible in the early weeks of the season. They have already played seven matches in all competitions including the UEFA Super Cup, the DFB-Pokal, the German Super Cup and of course the Bundesliga. Bayern have plundered 25 goals in that time, losing just one of the games; that being the 4-1 thumping at the hands of Hoffenheim. The Germans to continue their current scoring rate and find the net over 2.5 times in the match could well be a good be at odds of 7/4 with Betfred.
To do that however, they do have to get past a Rojiblancos’ defence that has been predictably stubborn thus far. In their four La Liga matches so far this campaign, Simeone’s troops have kept three clean sheets. The only goal that they have conceded this season came in the 6-1 thumping of Granada on the opening weekend of the campaign. The odds for Atleti to produce another shut out sits at 11/2 with Paddy Power.
In all, Bayern are certain favourites to win the match at 11/20 with Betfair, with Atletico Madrid some way behind according to the bookies at 9/2. A draw is available at 7/2.
Following their 2-0 success against Celta Vigo at the weekend, it’s unlikely that Simeone will alter his starting line-up all too much for the trip to Germany. The only change could be the introduction of Marcos Llorente for Angel Correa in what is somewhat of a defensive-minded move. Jose Gimenez has missed a large portion of the opening weeks of the season but could return.
Flick meanwhile has a full complement to choose from ahead of his side’s Champions League opener but it remains very likely that the side will remain similar to the one that defeated Ariminia Bielefeld 4-1 at the weekend. Lucas Hernandez may well have done enough to keep Alphonso Davies in the bench.