Toure ban heightens Bayern’s hopes of handicap win over Man City
Barcelona and Real Madrid are the only two teams to have progressed from the Champions League group stages with 18 points out of 18 this century, but Bayern Munich can add their names to this illustrious list with a home victory over Manchester City.
Not only does the Bayern victory look a formality at 4/9 in the Champions League odds, profits can be boosted by backing the reigning Champions League holders to triumph when giving up a handicap.
Bayern are 19/20 to be Man City by at least two goals, something that they have already achieved in Group D at the Etihad, when leaving with a 3-1 victory in October.
Given that Man City are far more formidable on their own patch than on the road – they have won seven from seven at the Etihad in the Premier League and scored 29 goals in the process – Bayern should be able to at least match their away result when returning to the Allianz Arena.
Bayern would have also covered a one-goal handicap in their last six wins in all competitions and Man City’s cause will not be aided by the absence of Yaya Toure because of suspension.
Pep Guardiola’s team do have their own injury problems with Bastian Schweinsteiger and Arjen Robben out, but they did win 7-0 at Werder Bremen without this pair in their latest Bundesliga outing.
Therefore, backing Bayern winning when conceding a two-goal headstart may still be a productive strategy at 5/2.
Bayern have played 11 home fixtures in all competitions this season and scored at least two in 10 of them, making the 7/20 that they net over 1.5 goals against Man City another to throw into the banker pot.
Man City have already conceded two or more in away trips to Cardiff, Aston Villa, Chelsea and West Brom too.
What is also noticeable about Bayern Munich is that they have a track record of doing the bulk of their scoring after half-time, with a probable reason being due to the opposition tiring after an hour of ball-chasing and pressing.
Bayern have scored at least one second-half goal in nine of their last 10 fixtures and helped themselves to a minimum of two after the interval on six occasions in this period.
It is 11/8 that Bayern score over 1.5 goals in the second half against Man City, who also recently let in two late on when being forced to endure a nervy finale when beating West Brom.
Meanwhile, given that six different players have scored for Bayern across their last two outings, this ability to spread goals around the squad may ensure some value can be found in the ‘to score at anytime’ market.
Thomas Muller looks one of the more guaranteed starters and holds some appeal at 1/1 to net in the 90 minutes after scoring four in his last five Bayern appearances.
Toni Kroos is the one constant in the Bayern midfield of late and given the possibility that he could be pushed forward into the number-10 role should Javi Martinez be deemed fit to start, he is fairly priced at 7/2 to score in the 90.