Bayern Munich and VfL Wolfsburg were the only two German Bundesliga teams to make it into the round of 16 of this season’s UEFA Champions League.
The two German teams left in Europe’s elite club cup competition this season have been handed two remarkably different ties in order to reach the quarter-finals.
Here are Bundesliga 365’s Champions League football predictions for the two remaining sides:
KAA Gent vs VfL Wolfsburg
It may not be the strongest Wolfsburg side of recent seasons following the sale of Kevin De Bruyne to Manchester City over the summer but Dieter Hecking’s side progressed from a tough-looking group that consisted of PSV Eindhoven, Manchester United and CSKA Moscow.
The Wolves progressed as group winners with a 3-2 win over the English Premier League side at the Volkswagen Arena in their final match, maintaining a 100% win record in their home matches. A 2-0 win in Moscow in matchday 5 was the only time they picked up points on their travels.
Gent was one of the more favourable draws a team could have picked out for the second round and Wolfsburg fans will be extremely confident in their side reaching the last eight as a result.
There are no household names in the Belgian side’s squad but players to look out for on 17 February during the first leg are goalscoring midfielders Sven Kums and Danijel Milićević, and striker Laurent Depoitre.
Over two legs we cannot see the German side being eliminated from this tie.
Juventus vs Bayern Munich
After winning their group, Bayern Munich were handed one of the toughest ties possible when they drew Italian Serie A champions and last season’s Champions League runners-up Juventus.
It is certainly the most mouth-watering tie of the eight that will take place between February and March and we’re confident that Pep Guardiola’s side will progress from this one.
Bayern Munich have a handsome lead at the top of the Bundesliga meaning the Spanish head coach should have little hesitation about resting players domestically, either side of each leg, especially before they have to go to Turin.
Meanwhile Juventus’ slow start to their domestic season means manager Max Allegri won’t have as much freedom. Fixtures though have worked out quite generous. Prior to the first leg at the Juventus Stadium, the Italian side go to Bologna four days before and host Internazionale five days after. Then they host Sassuolo three days before their trip to the Allianz Arena before the Turin derby at Torino four days after they play in Germany.
Guardiola’s side will have a lot of talent to deal with. They already know Mario Mandžukić very well. Young Argentine striker Paulo Dybala had a great first half of the season before slowing down slightly before the break. Paul Pogba and Sami Khedira are two of the stars in central midfield, but during the summer they sold Arturo Vidal to Bayern and allowed Andrea Pirlo to leave for the MLS – perhaps these sales had something to do with their slow start and maybe Munich can dominate the midfield battle.
It will prove to be a fascinating tie no doubt, but we’re favouring the German side to progress over two legs from this tie.