With all cup obligations already concluded and the league entering its final few games, Bayern Munich are just about ready to pull the curtain down on an unremarkable season. It’s good that the game against Borussia Dortmund comes late into April, as it leaves one final high-profile fixture to close out what could potentially be a full decade of consecutive title wins for the German record champions.
All Julian Nagelsmann needs to do is beat Borussia Dortmund. Easy, right?
Things look pretty decent on the Bayern side of things, although the bench could be a bit thin. Kingsley Coman is doubtful for the game with an ankle issue, while Bouna Sarr (knee), Omar Richards (cold), Corentin Tolisso (torn muscle fiber) are all confirmed out. Niklas Sule and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting could both be available for the game.
So, what could the starting XI look like? Well, we know that Robert Lewandowski will definitely start up top. With contract talks seemingly at an impasse, this could be the last time the Polish striker features in der Klassiker after a decade of appearances for both sides in the fixture. Since moving to Bayern, Lewandowski has hardly ever failed to score against his former team, so let’s hope he keeps up that record on Saturday — even if it ends up being his last time.
Thomas Muller suffered an injury scare in midweek but eventually resumed team training, so we can expect him to start behind Lewandowski in the attacking midfield position. With Coman’s ankle still causing issues, Serge Gnabry and Leroy Sane are likely to start on the wings. Leon Goretzka and Joshua Kimmich are both fit and set to form their usual partnership in midfield.
As for the defense — Nagelsmann didn’t confirm whether the Dortmund-bound Niklas Sule would start tomorrow, but he did say that the big German was a candidate for the starting lineup. However, even leaving the BVB-connection aside, Sule has little match practice in recent weeks so he’s unlikely to actually make the XI.
Lucas Hernandez and Dayot Upamecano are the most likely center-back pairing, flanked by Alphonso Davies and Benjamin Pavard at the left and right-back positions respectively. Bayern captain Manuel Neuer, meanwhile, will resume his duties between the sticks.
Here’s what that lineup could look like:
Bild seems to think Alphonso Davies won’t start the game, and Kingsley Coman will play instead of Serge Gnabry.
Bayern's predicted XI against Dortmund, according to BILD:— Bayern & Germany (@iMiaSanMia) April 22, 2022
Neuer – Pavard, Upamecano, Süle, Hernández – Kimmich, Goretzka – Coman, Müller, Sané – Lewandowski
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