Initial reactions and observations
- Credit to Julian Nagelsmann, he got it all right today. His setup closed down Mbappe and Messi, and kept Bayern Munich safe while also getting the goals when the team needed him. His adjustments at halftime to get Choupo-Moting and Thomas Muller involved more in the game were what got the breakthrough. The subs were spot-on as well.
- This is the second time that PSG have been knocked out by Bayern from goals by their exes. Imagine buying the most expensive attack in football and then getting kicked out of the Champions League by players who left you for free.
- Daniele Orsato was a little too lenient with PSG this game, and the offside call on Choupo’s first goal was bogus. This guy has always presided over Bayern wins, but he’s not a friend of the club by any stretch of the imagination.
- Josip Stanisic should see his market value skyrocket after this. WHAT. A. PERFORMANCE by the young man.
- As for defenders, Matthijs de Ligt kept Bayern Munich alive when an opening goal could’ve sunk the team. He was a rock at the back and made zero mistakes. Juventus got 76m for this guy? They got scammed.
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Full time: Bayern Munich 2-0 PSG.
89’ — GOOOOOOOOOOOAL! Serge Gnabry makes it 2-0! Game’s over!
85’ — Subs: Coman and Muller subbed for Cancelo and Gnabry.
81’ — Sub: Sadio Mane comes on for Jamal Musiala.
67’ — Sub: Goalscorer Choupo-Moting subbed for Leroy Sane.
60 — GOOOOOOOAL! Muller nicks it off Verratti who sends it to Goretzka, who passes to Choupo and it’s a GOAL!
56’ — The game is stopped as Mukiele gets treatment. Nagelsmann and Galtier have an argument in the background.
52’ — Choupo-Moting scores, but somehow it’s ruled offside.
45’ — The second half is underway! Mukiele was subbed at HT.
Halftime observations and analysis
- This is an intensely cagey affair. You can say PSG have had the better of it compared to Bayern Munich, but much of that has been down to the mistake by Yann Sommer. Meanwhile, the threat of Mbappe keeps offensive pressure from building.
- Matthijs de Ligt has now had two goal line clearances in two successive games.
- Getting Coman more involved needs to be the goal of the second half.
- Choupo-Moting’s limitations in holdup play are being exposed today.
- Joshua Kimmich is having to do some serious work in midfield with three players constantly on him. Goretzka may need to adjust his positioning.
Half time: Bayern Munich 0-0 PSG.
38’ — DE LIGT TAKES IT OFF THE LINE! Sommer is no Manuel Neuer, he should’ve cleared it. This might affect his game.
35’ — Sub: Marquinhos looks like he’s aggravated his rib injury. He’s coming off for Mukiele.
31’ — Musiala shoots and Donnarumma saves! Big chance!
24’ — Perfect blocks by Davies, then De Ligt, then Davies! Leo Messi denied!
13’ — Mbappe gets a ball over the top and outruns Upamecano, but Sommer gets there first and collects, leading to a collision with the Frenchman. The ref blows for a foul.
Kickoff: We are underway!
One hour until kickoff: We have lineups! It’s as expected, with Bayern Munich lineup a back-three consisting of Josip Stanisic, Dayot Upamecano, and Matthijs de Ligt. Thomas Muller, who did not make the starting XI during the first leg in Paris, is handed the captain’s armband for this one. Here is the full starting XI:
✨♦️ ♦️✨— FC Bayern München (@FCBayern) March 8, 2023
Mit dieser ins Rückspiel gegen Paris! #packmas #FCBPSG #UCL pic.twitter.com/QlGRs90CEc
While a 1-0 lead from the first leg is nice, it doesn’t mean the tie is over. Bayern Munich can become the first Bundesliga team to book passage to the Champions League quarter-finals if they beat Paris Saint-Germain tonight. Julian Nagelsmann and his team know what’s at stake here. The whole season could be judged by the outcome of this game.
The same, of course, can be said for PSG. With Kylian Mbappe playing from the start, Christophe Galtier will be hoping for an early breakthrough to overturn the deficit from the first leg. Opposing him will likely be a variant of the 3-5-2 which looks very similar to a 4-2-3-1 at times, with Thomas Muller and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting starting up top. Josip Stanisic will be replacing the suspended Benjamin Pavard, and his task will be to stop Kylian Mbappe on his side of the pitch.
The slim margins mean that neither side can afford to slip up here. The future of the season is at stake.
It’s Bayern time.
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Location: Allianz Arena, Munich, Germany
Time: 9:00 pm local time, 3:00 pm EST
TV/streaming: Paramount+, Find Your Country
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