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Paris Saint-Germain vs Bayern Munich: Lineups, team news, injuries, Galtier’s starting XI leaked, and more! (Updated!)

Are we surprised that Kylian Mbappe isn’t injured? Not at all.

Training FC Bayern Munich Photo by Angelika Warmuth/picture alliance via Getty Images

Julian Nagelsmann was right — Kylian Mbappe took part in full Paris Saint-Germain team training. While Galtier may try his best to hide it, the Frenchman will definitely play against Bayern Munich on Tuesday. So given that Champions League games are effectively do-or-die moments, what can Bayern do to answer? Well read on to find out.

Team news

As of right now, there are no new injuries to report at Bayern Munich. Here is the full list of absentees for the club:

  • Sadio Mane: In training but won’t be back in time for the first leg.
  • Lucas Hernandez: Suffered a season-ending ACL tear during the World Cup.
  • Manuel Neuer: Broke his leg while skiing on holiday.
  • Noussair Mazraoui: Suffered pericarditis as a complication from COVID.

In addition, youngster Paul Wanner did not travel with the team due to gastrointestinal problems, but he wasn’t going to start anyway. Ryan Gravenberch, who missed the Bochum game due to a knee issue, however did manage to make the squad list. The same goes for Thomas Muller, who also trained normally in the buildup to the game. Muller had to be subbed off vs Bochum at half time due to a “minor calf issue”.

So, what kind of starting XI will we see from Bayern Munich? Well, we actually went through every single option in detail during our podcast, which you can listen to below or on Spotify.

Main questions: Back three or back four? Kingsley Coman or Alphonso Davies? Should Leon Goretzka start? Should Leroy Sane be benched? There are pros and cons to each and every single choice, as well as the underlying dynamic of Nagelsmann needing to prove himself in the Champions League due to the loss against Villarreal last year. This is all discussed in the podcast, so if you’re curious at all then give it a listen.

If you just want a quick rundown of the options, then considering what we’ve seen so far, here are three potential starting XI’s Bayern Munich could use. Each one represents a potential lineup vs PSG:

On the PSG side of things, Kylian Mbappe completed full team training on Monday which makes him almost certain to start against Bayern Munich. Galtier is likely to use a back three setup, with Messi, Neymar, and Mbappe up top — potentially forming a 3-4-3 formation with wingbacks. Aside from the front three, Marco Verrati and Achraf Hakimi are the main dangermen in offense, while Gianluigi Donnarumma will be a serious hurdle for any Bayern Munich attacker.

This game is shaping up to be the biggest of the season so far. Let’s hope Bayern are ready.

Update #1

Le Parisien, who originally reported that Mbappe would be ready in time for the game, says that the player “wants” to start the game vs Bayern Munich. PSG coach Christophe Galtier did not confirm whether Mbappe would be fit enough to start, but said that a decision would be taken after the final team training session on Tuesday.

These reports are all just smoke and mirrors. There is no way that Mbappe won’t start. This is PSG’s biggest game of the season by far. Galtier is in no position to refuse him.

Update #2

Oh wow, multiple sources including L’Equipe and Le Parisien (who have had all the insider info on this game so far) report that PSG will field a flat 4-4-2 against Bayern Munich. Is Galtier going to go full Brexit ball on us? Kylian Mbappe will apparently play the last half hour. That’s a huge surprise, and may be a mistake if he’s fit.

The last team to use a true flat 4-4-2 versus Bayern Munich in the Champions League was FC Barcelona under Quique Setien back in 2020. This is not to say that PSG will end up like Barca did in that match, but’s strange to see Galtier abandon the back three after explicitly talking about its advantages before the game in an interview. More mind games from the PSG coach?

Update #3

Now this is interesting. Both Bild and Sky predict that Julian Nagelsmann will bench Leroy Sane for Leon Goretzka in this game, but they can’t agree on whether it will be a back four or a back three.

Bild has Davies starting at left-back with Joao Cancelo at right-back, while Sky has the players of a 3-5-2 arrayed like a 4-2-3-1 (for some confusing reason). In Sky’s formation, Kingsley Coman is likely to be the right wingback with no Alphonso Davies.

Based on that, you can tell that neither publication has the lineup exactly right — they’re still only guessing. However, it definitely looks like Nagelsmann has identified the midfield as the key battleground, and wants Goretzka there next to Kimmich. We covered the exact same topic in our podcast — it only makes sense that you’d want to cut off the supply to PSG’s incredible front-three.

Keep an eye on this space for any more updates as we get closer to the match!

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