Bayern Munich must improve to avoid trophyless season
Champions League Bayern's only hope as Dortmund exert dominance in Germany
Touted as potential treble winners earlier in the season, Bayern Munich must now lift the Champions League at 2/5 to rescue their season on Saturday.
Dortmund powered ahead of Bayern in pursuit of a second consecutive Bundesliga title, eventually finishing a comfortable eight points clear of the Bavarians, who were runners up.
Saturday then saw Dortmund complete a first domestic double in their history, as they inflicted a crushing 5-2 defeat on Bayern to land the German Cup.
Such a loss is a massive blow to the most successful German side of all time, and their confidence could be damaged as they enter Saturday’s Allianz Arena clash, looking to claim a fifth Champions League title.
Bayern are 3/4 to beat Chelsea in normal time on their own turf, but will be shaken by recent results, dressing room unrest, and the big game mettle of their opponents.
Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery’s dispute in the European semi-final represented some squad disharmony, which may not bode well in a tie where Chelsea will be no pushovers.
Also, bearing in mind their collapses in recent crucial clashes with domestic rivals Dortmund, Bayern could draw accusations of lacking the required ‘bottle’ in big games.
Their German Cup loss on Saturday was their fifth in succession at the hands of Dortmund in fact, so Die Roten will need to improve a perceived mental fragility for this weekend’s final.
The visiting Blues are hungry for a maiden Champions League success, and a recent FA Cup final victory showed their penchant for the occasion, as did a 2-2 draw away to Barcelona en route to the European final.
Chelsea are 7/4 to lift the trophy for the first time outright, whilst they can be backed to beat Bayern in normal time at 10/3.
Their German counterparts’ home advantage could prove crucial, though as aforementioned, the Blues big game mentality under Roberto Di Matteo appears rather unerring.