Preview: Bayern Munich vs. Galatasaray

Preview: Bayern Munich vs. Galatasaray

Bayern Munich can punch their ticket to the knockout rounds of the Champions League with a Group A victory over Galatasaray at the Allianz Arena on Wednesday night.

The Bavarian giants are seeking to complete the double over their Turkish counterparts after securing a 3-1 win in the reverse fixture two weeks ago.

Three days after suffering a humiliating DBF-Pokal second-round exit at the hands of third-tier outfit Saarbrucken, Bayern Munich returned to winning ways in emphatic fashion when they put Bundesliga rivals Borussia Dortmund to the sword 4-0 at Westfalenstadion on Saturday.

Dayot Upamecano headed Bayern in front in the fourth minute before Harry Kane netted a superb hat-trick on his Der Klassiker debut, increasing his Bundesliga goal tally to 15 from just 10 games, to help Thomas Tuchel’s side claim a statement win and remain within touching distance of Bayer Leverkusen at the top of the table.

The Bavarian giants will welcome a return to the Allianz Arena where they have won each of their last four games and scored a remarkable 22 goals, including four in a thrilling 4-3 victory over Manchester United in the Champions League on matchday two.

Bayern, who are one of only four teams with a perfect group-stage record after three matches this season, currently boast the longest unbeaten run in Champions League group-stage history which was extended to 37 games courtesy of the aforementioned win over Galatasaray a fortnight ago.

The six-time European Cup winners have won each of their last six meetings with Turkish opposition in European competition, including a thumping 6-0 victory over Galatasaray in their only previous home encounter with the Super Lig club back in 1972-73.

Galatasaray enter Wednesday’s contest in fine form as they have won eight of their last nine matches across all competitions – a 3-1 home loss to Bayern Munich the only blot on their copybook.

Okan Buruk’s side have barely put a foot wrong on the domestic front as they have picked up 31 points from a possible 33 available in 11 Super Lig games, winning 10 successive matches since a goalless stalemate with Kayserispor on the opening weekend of the season back in mid-August.

Wilfred Zaha inspired Galatasaray to their latest triumph with a goal either side of half time to help the Turkish giants claim a 2-1 home win over Kasimpasa last Friday and climb above Fenerbahce to the top of the table.

Galatasaray now turn their attention back to the Champions League where they remain in contention to reach the last 16 for the first time in a decade as they currently sit second in Group A, one point above third-placed Manchester United who they face on matchday five.

The 23-time Turkish champions have never beaten Bayern before, but they can head to Bavaria with optimism as they are unbeaten in each of their last 10 European away games, while they have won each of their last four away fixtures with German opposition, most recently beating Schalke 04 by a 3-2 scoreline in the 2012-13 Champions League.

Bayern Munich Champions League form:

Bayern Munich form (all competitions):

Galatasaray Champions League form:

Galatasaray form (all competitions):

We say: Bayern Munich 3-1 Galatasaray
Goals are to be expected on Wednesday as Bayern have found the net at least twice in 14 of their last 15 matches across all competitions, while Galatasaray’s last five Champions League away visits to Germany have produced a total of 22 goals.

Bayern will be regarded as firm favourites to claim maximum points, though, and they should ultimately have enough firepower to outscore their Turkish opponents en route to booking their place in the last 16.

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