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How will Bayern Munich line up against Schalke?

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Just two more competitive games until Liverpool, and the team still seems to be struggling with injuries. Not good.

ICC Singapore FC Bayern Press Conference Photo by Thananuwat Srirasant/Getty Images for ICC

With just two more games to go until the Champions League clash against Liverpool, Bayern Munich host Schalke 04 at the Allianz Arena. In a perfect world, this would be the time to try out new lineups in a bid to decide what would be best. However, after last week’s loss to Bayer Leverkusen, the Bavarians find themselves falling behind in the title race, and Niko Kovac can’t afford to get too experimental.

How will the coach handle this balancing act?

Team News

In the pregame press conference, Kovac confirmed that Arjen Robben would not be available for the game. The Dutchman continues to struggle with a thigh injury that has kept him out since November. In addition, Manuel Neuer is doubtful for the game — according to the coach, they don’t want to take any risks before Liverpool. In addition to these two, Corentin Tolisso continues to work on his ACL comeback.

So, how might the Bavarians line up? Well, Robert Lewandowski is sure to be leading the line. Who will slot in behind him is a bit of a mystery — it could be three out of the quintet of James Rodriguez, Thomas Muller, Kingsley Coman, Serge Gnabry, and Franck Ribery.

Considering that Muller will be suspended against Liverpool, it’s possible that he might sit this one out in favor of James Rodriguez, in order to give the Colombian more time with the team. Meanwhile, Kingsley Coman just played a full 120 minutes against Hertha Berlin in midweek, so there’s a decent possibility that he might be rested.

In midfield, Leon Goretzka will probably start next to Javi Martinez, with Thiago Alcantara maybe getting a rest. In defense, there’s a chance that Jerome Boateng might make it back into the squad, given Hummels’ howler in midweek. Aside from that, there should be no surprises in defense, with David Alaba, Joshua Kimmich, and Niklas Sule reprising their usual roles.

So how will Bayern line up? Here are our best guesses:

Ineednoname

MarcusIredahl

Brian Burton