Pressure Really On Host Arsenal vs. Bayern Munich - 'Over' The Wise Pick

Bayern Munich

Kevin Stott

Tuesday, February 28, 2017 1:00 PM GMT

Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2017 1:00 PM GMT

After two straight 5-1 defeats at Bayern Munich in UEFA Champions League play, Arsenal has to be a little down seeing this European Groundhog’s Day elimination thing recurring every Winter. Today's frenzied pace and some easy goals scored in this return leg make the Over the wise pick.

Bayern München heads to Emirates Stadium in North London to face Arsenal in Leg 2 of their Round of 16 series on March 7. With the Bundesliga champions rolling in Leg 1 in Munich, 5-1, oddsmakers have Bayern -133 favorites over Arsenal (+205) with the Draw +280 (BetMania). The Total is 3 with the Over -120 (BetMania) while on the Goal Line, Bayern are -½ -103 with the Gunners +½ +117 (BetMania).

 

FC Bayern München

Bayern Munich (+275 to win UCL, Intertops) had won 15 of 18 after an 8-0 stomping of Hamburg in league play Feb. 26 and have been playing fluid and confident soccer for manager Ancelotti. In that Leg 1 pasting at Allianz Arena, Bayern got two goals from Alcántara and one from Robben, Lewandowski and Müller as it turned a 1-1 Halftime tab into likely advancement.

With little pressure here and five Road goals in their pockets, expect Bayern to not care about offense at first, with the onus on Arsenal to almost have to get two quick goals by Neuer and somehow get back in this, and that could lead to easy goals on the counter for Bayern (5-0-2 UCL, 19 GF-7 GA).

 Arsenal FC

Arsenal (200/1 to win UCL, Intertops) went from 20/1 to 200/1 after that Leg 1 embarrassment and Gunners manager Wenger is left with little choice here except to attack hard from the start and hope Sánchez and Özil can create and capitalize. Arsenal will not only need to score first here, but score first and probably score twice by Halftime to have any kind of chance.

With backup GK Ospina shelled in Munich—and star CB Koscielny (Hamstring) getting hurt—vet Cech may get the call here and the hosts will need sheer perfection from whomever’s in goal along with players like Oxlade-Chamberlain, Welbeck and Giroud (if they play) to avoid being eliminated in this round for a seventh straight time. Only three clubs have rallied to advance from 4-goal Leg 1 deficits.

 

Series Trends, Expectations, Picks

Bayern is 6-3-2 in the L11 meetings (22 GF-12 GA) but the Germans have won just three of its L13 UCL Road games in this phase and are 0-4-4 L8 Knockout Stage Road matches. With so much pressure on Arsenal to score first and quickly, expect the Gunners to try to come out fast and furious which could backfire.

The bulk of the scoring chances could come in the First Half, making that market’s Over (1½, Over +140, Coral) worth consideration as if Arsenal fails to make it interesting in the first 45, apathy will run rampant at the Emirates. Bayern will likely get at least 2 goals here and Arsenal at least one, making the Over the pick.

PREDICTED FINAL SCORE: Bayern Munich 3 Arsenal 1UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE PICK: Over 3 -120Best Line Offered: At BetMania

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