Bayern Munich v Basel preview
Bayern Munich will look to overturn a 1-0 deficit when they host Basel in the second leg of their UEFA Champions League last-16 tie.
Last Updated: 13/03/12 10:18am
Bayern Munich will look to overturn a 1-0 deficit when they host Basel in the second leg of their UEFA Champions League last-16 tie on Tuesday night.
The Swiss side, who knocked Manchester United out of the competition, have the upper hand heading to the Allianz Arena following Valentin Stocker's 86th-minute goal in the first leg.
However, they could have their work cut out finishing the job against the Bundesliga giants, who have won 11 of their last 12 Champions League home encounters.
Bayern will also be feeling confident following an emphatic 7-1 thrashing of Hoffenheim in league action at the weekend, during which prolific striker Mario Gomez netted his third hat-trick of the season.
The four-time champions must score at least once on Tuesday to keep their European dream alive but Basel midfielder Granit Xhaka insists that will not be an easy feat.
"It is definitely difficult to score against us," he said after Basel opened up a 12-point lead at the top of the Swiss Super League with a 2-0 win over Grasshoppers Zurich at the weekend.
"Bayern may have scored goals this weekend, but they are not up against Hoffenheim tomorrow, they are up against FC Basel, and they are not going to get any goals then."
Basel coach Heiko Vogel knows what Bayern are capable of but has echoed Xhaka's optimism ahead of Tuesday's clash.
"We know about our opponents. We know what Bayern are capable of so we have a lot of respect for them," he said.
"But no one is full of fear, there is no reason for this. We are in a positive mood. We need to be very focused for at least 90 minutes."
The ambitious coach, who has won 14 out of 19 games since taking the command from Thorsten Fink last October, added: "My trophy cabinet is still empty."
Bayern coach Jupp Heynckes is confident his side can progress despite an impressive first-leg showing from the visitors.
He said: "I have said before: Basel are a very good team. There is a good mix of young and experienced players. They showed in the first game what they can do.
"Nevertheless, tomorrow will be another game. We have so many experienced players and I am confident of getting through. We were excellent against Hoffenheim."
Heynckes is sweating over the fitness of Gomez and Arjen Robben, who both limped out of Saturday's win and will be a doubt right up until kick-off on Tuesday night.
Jerome Boateng also failed to last the whole 90 minutes and he too is a doubt.
However, they will be boosted by the return of Bastian Schweinsteiger, who made his comeback off the bench against Hoffenheim after more than a month out with ankle ligament damage.
Basel arrive with only one doubt after Park Joo Ho missed the Grasshoppers game with a calf injury.