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“Bayern Munich belongs in Champions League Final every year”: Thomas Müller motivated to beat PSG

Müller remains undaunted about facing PSG’s star-studded attack.

Paris Saint-Germain v Bayern Munich - UEFA Champions League Final Photo by M. Donato/FC Bayern via Getty Images

Bayern Munich captain Thomas Müller is relishing the opportunity to play Paris Saint-Germain in the upcoming UEFA Champions League round-of-16 tie. In his monthly newsletter to fans, the 33-year-old declared his ambitions of improving on last season’s UCL campaign and making a deep run in the tournament this time around.

“The next Champions League game against Paris Saint-Germain will definitely be a real buzz,” wrote Müller (as captured by Bild). “I’m really looking forward to that. Last year, we were knocked out of the tournament far too early for my taste, and we definitely want to do better this year. I don’t need to tell you that the Champions League is important for FC Bayern for many reasons.”

Müller expressed his admiration for PSG’s all-star frontline of Kylian Mbappé, Lionel Messi and Neymar, and credited their partnership for transforming Les Parisiens into the team with the “most exciting” attack. However, the experienced midfielder remains confident of his side’s ability to deal with “M-N-M” trio’s threat and progress to the next round.

“Of course, the opponent in the round of 16 is PSG, which is quite a big name. But I still don’t know any team in the world that likes to play against FC Bayern,” Müller added. “Not even with Messi, Mbappé and Neymar in excellent form, as seen most recently at the World Cup. In my view, they are offensively the most exciting football team in the world. When the three of them get into a flow, it’s just really beautiful to watch from the outside. But against us, unfortunately, their footballing art has to take a break.”

FC Bayern Munich v Paris Saint-Germain - UEFA Champions League Quarter Final: Leg One Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

In their previous meeting with PSG in 2021, Die Roten were reeling from an injury crisis and had to do without starting-XI regulars like Robert Lewandowski, Leon Goretzka, Niklas Süle and Serge Gnabry. Moreover, some of the remaining prominent players in the lineup – including Müller, Joshua Kimmich and David Alaba – were severely fatigued as a result of a rigorous schedule.

While they were eventually eliminated on the now-scrapped away goals rule with a 3-3 aggregate, Hansi Flick’s team went toe-to-toe with Mbappé and co. over the two legs, despite the fitness issues they had to endure in the build-up to the quarter-finals. And it was Müller who stepped up in Lewandowski’s absence and scored a header in Bayern’s 2-3 first-leg defeat. Given his recent history with the French club, Der Raumdeter will surely have some added motivation to deliver an impact performance in Parc des Princes next week.

“Small anecdote from my career at this point: in my first four years as a young professional, we were in the Champions League Final three times as a matter of course,” recalled Müller. “Pretty impressive when I think about it today. Therefore, it has somehow firmly burned in me that FC Bayern belongs there every year.”

Interested in a proper, in-depth look at the game? How should Bayern Munich line up, what tactics should the team use, and what kind of impact will this game have on the future of Julian Nagelsmann? We have all that and more in the latest episode of our podcast. Listen to it below or on Spotify.

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