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Bayern Munich vs. Arsenal FC, Champions League: Thomas Müller absent from biggest match of the season

No Thomas Müller. Woof.

FC Schalke 04 v Bayern Muenchen - Bundesliga Photo by Alex Grimm/Bongarts/Getty Images

The Champions League Round of 16 against Arsenal FC is the biggest match of Bayern’s season yet. Thomas Müller is not in the starting lineup.

Carlo Ancelotti is turning to Thiago to pull all the strings in midfield and with Xabi Alonso and Arturo Vidal behind him, Bayern are taking no chances at allowing Arsenal to dominate the area in front of their centerbacks but without Thomas Müller there are huge questions to be asked of the Bayern Munich offense given Müller’s tenacious form in last weekend’s win over Ingolstadt.

Anticipated Tactical Setup

Look for Bayern to try to target the space behind the Arsenal defensive midfield. If they can successfully get Thiago and Vidal into that area, the wings will open up for Douglas Costa and Arjen Robben to do their damage. Bayern needs to balance that need with getting Vidal back on defense, because Xabi Alonso alone against a combination as fluid as Mesut Oezil and Alexis Sanchez could spell doom for Bayern if they’re not careful.

Up front, how Robert Lewandowski handles Per Mertesacker and Shkodran Mustafi by himself and how he isolates them from their peers will be essential to creating danger in the box. We’ve seen Bayern be far too lacking in front of goal recently when oppositions are able to bottle him up.

Bayern Munich Bench

To be announced

Arsenal FC Lineup

Well this is embarrassing...