Champions League

Bayern ready for closed-door clash

2014-09-29 09:38
Pep Guardiola (AFP)

Moscow - Five-time European champions Bayern Munich travel to Russia on Tuesday where they will take on domestic giants CSKA Moscow behind closed doors on matchday two in Group E.

Pep Guardiola's talent-laden, but injury ravaged side, opened their account with a last minute 1-0 victory over English champions Manchester City in their opener while CSKA were humbled 5-1 in the Italian capital by Roma.

The Red Army side have been punished by governing body UEFA after fan unrest during their group stage match against Czech club Viktoria Plzen last season and only a sparse number of people will be inside the Khimki Arena for Tuesday's key match.

The 12-time Russian champions now find themselves in more hot water after violent clashes at the Roma clash when a number of arrests were made inside and outside the Olympic Stadium.

Bayern maybe without their World Cup winning defender Jerome Boateng, who made the trip to Moscow but remains a doubt as he tries to shake off a hamstring problem.

"We'll have to talk with the doctors," Guardiola revealed on whether the 26-year-old Berliner, who came off during the 4-0 Bundesliga victory over Paderhorn last week, will take his place in central defence.

"We can't substitute a defender every match and a defender generally plays the first minute to the last," added the former Barcelona handler.

French winger Franck Ribery and Bastian Schweinsteiger, who have only played 23 minutes in total this season, are out while former Real Madrid midfielder Xabi Alonso could be thrown into the back-four if Boateng fails a fitness test.

Last season CSKA and Bayern met for the first time in Champions League group action with the Germans winning 3-0 at their Allianz Arena and 3-1 in the return leg.

CSKA will come into the tie following a seven-goal thriller in their last league outing, coming out on top 4-3 over Ural Yekaterinburg.

Ivory Coast forward Seydou Doumbia scored a brace, while Russian international Alan Dzagoev and Finland international Roman Eremenko added the other goals in a victory that keeps them four points behind leaders Zenit St. Petersburg.

Despite the victory, CSKA manager Leonid Slutsky said he was deeply concerned about the defensive weaknessess that were badly exposed against Ural.

"Our attack looked well as we've scored four goals and had more scoring chances. On the other side we've conceded three goals and we can't play like that against Bayern," he said.

CSKA, the 2005 UEFA Cup winners, are still without Swedish midfielder Rasmus Elm and Brazilian forward Vitinho through injury, while midfielder Aleksandrs Cauna is a doubtful starter.


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