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Bayern and City meet once more in Champions League group scrap

Current Bundesliga and Premier League champions Bayern Munich and Manchester City respectively had never met in a competitive match before 2011, but this will be their fifth encounter since. Both sides have won home and away in those battles, but it is the hosts who go into this as odds-on 4/6 favourites to take three points.

However, the German giants, who have yet to lose in the league this term, will be without a whole host of talent for this crucial opening Champions League Group E game. The likes of Franck Ribery, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Holger Badstuber, Javi Martinez, Thiago Alcantara and Rafinha are all injured, while star winger Arjen Robben could be sidelined as well.

With Munich’s midfield looking thin, that could mean a start for Xabi Alonso. The Spaniard has played for his old side Liverpool against the Manchester side four times before, and never been on the losing side. Back him at 7/1 for him to get a rare goal.

City will be particularly pleased if Robben is ruled out, as the Dutchman netted the opener against them last season at the Etihad. If fit, however, he is 5/1 to score first again, or 5/4 in the anytime market.

Thomas Muller and Mario Gotze have also all been on target for Bayern against the Sky Blues before, and are 6/5 and 7/4 respectively to net anytime one more.

Pep Guardiola, who reportedly once had an unsuccessful trial with Man City as a player, can rely on new striker Robert Lewandowski as well. The Polish poacher has scored 16 times in his last 22 Champions League games for his old side Borussia Dortmund, and is 4/1 to get the first goal of the game.

Bayern have switched to a more attacking 3-4-3 formation this term, so expect goals in this fixture once more. Take odds of 7/2 for the match score total to be over 4.5 once more.

Manuel Pellegrini’s men come into this encounter as 4/1 outsiders for victory, perhaps due to the fact they have not won in their last two matches in the Premier League. They suffered a recent home defeat to Stoke City, before having to come back from behind to draw with Arsenal. A share of the spoils at the Allianz Arena is more fancied at 11/4.

City will be without their Chilean boss, however, who will serve a touchline ban, while fellow South American Pablo Zabaleta is suspended from playing in this fixture.

For goals, though, David Silva has netted twice against Bayern for City, and the Spanish attacker is an enticing 7/2 chance to score anytime again. Yaya Toure looks set for a recall as well, and the Ivorian, who has also been on target against this upcoming opposition, is is the same price in that market.

James Milner was the surprise hero in the last encounter, with the determined Englishman scoring the winner in a 3-2 result for the Sky Blues. He is a decent 9/1 chance in the anytime market.