Football: Champions League Final – Bayern Munich v Chelsea

May 18, 2012
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Bayern Munich can lift the trophy on home soil.

Bayern can prove to organised and strong for Chelsea in the 2012 Champions League final when the two teams meet in the Allianz Stadium in Munich on Saturday night. Home advantage will be a huge advantage for the Germans; a look at the stats backs up the view.

Whilst my view is that Bayern will ultimately lift the trophy on Saturday, most probably by winning withing the 90 minutes, they could also finish off Chelsea in extra time or even if the match emulates Bayerns Semi final against Real Madrid and goes to penalties. English teams have one only one of the last eight European finals they have contested, and Chelsea have played thier own part in that Statistic in recent years. Expect some celebration from the Chelsea fans though as I do expect them to get on the score sheet at some time.

Relative European Form

Let’s first look at the last eighteen games, (9 each) the two sides have played in this competition. I’m specifically looking for draws to negate the chance of this game frustratingly going beyond the final whistle. Bayern Munich have not recorded a single draw in their last 9 games, winning seven, losing twice; whilst Chelsea have had two stalemates in the same 9 matches. Of course, the 2-2 draw at Camp Nou that saw them through to this final, and then we go all the way back to November last year when Genk held the blue to a 1-1 score line in Belgium. What is immediately noticeable is that Chelsea have scored in every game including the two defeats, and in fact, that scoring run can be extended back t the last 13 Champion League matches they have played. On this basis alone, the first bet I will make on the game is both sides to score. 1.9 on Betfair seems fairly generous.

Home Advantage for Bayern a Strong Element

Normally when it comes down to knockout competition, or tournament competition, one would not look too deeply into home and away form, but of course on this occasion Bayern Munich, whilst not playing in front of an exclusively partisan home crowd, will be in their home stadium and familiar surroundings. If we now look at the relative home and away stats for the Champion League contests we see a very different picture. A picture many Chelsea fans may want to avert their eyes from. Bayern have won all of their last nine home matches, conceding just 4 goals in three matches, scoring 21 and that run can be extended to 14 wins in 16. The two defeats notable came against the same Inter Milan side. Chelsea on the other had have won only twice in the same 9 away match run, and whilst the win against Benfica may deserve some kudos, a 0-1 revers against Copenhagen doesn’t rate top class. All of a sudden if any confidence of a Chelsea win is in evidence it is dissipated, although again, they have scored in the last eight away fixtures including the two draws and three defeats. Paddy Power and SkyBet go 5/6 the home win (90 mins), it’s is another option.

A Quiet First Half

Given that I think both sides will score and Bayern will run out the winners, there are a host of other considerations to make. One might think that taking EVENS for Over 2.5 goals would be pertinent. The one reservation I have on this is that I think the first half will be very tight, as Bayern patiently weight up their options and work Chelsea out. In fact, it could even be Chelsea that put the ball in the back of the net first. In my never ending quest for as many stats as I can find, I have unearthed something to back up the thought that the first half will be quite on the goals front. Bayern Munich have played at home against English teams on eight occasions since 2001, and in five of the eight games, there has been no more than a single first half goal, Chelsea have played on German soil six times since 1999, and ALL SIX games have had less than 2 first half strikes. Furthermore, take a look at Chelsea’s last 30 away matches in all competitions and we find that no fewer than 24 games have contained 0 or 1 goals in the first halves. UNDER 1.5 First Half goals can be backed at 1.46, or perhaps the more speculative may want to choose a half time correct score between, 0-0 (2/1 BWin), 1-0 (29/10 Betvictor) or even 0-1 (13/2 Coral). I have to say, the Coral price of 13/2 Chelsea 1-0 at half time is a temptation in what could become quite a portfolio of bets for the match.

Goalscorers

Goals need Goal Scorers. Who is most likely to net on the night? Mario Gomez (Bayern Munich) is the obvious choice, but 9/2 for first Goalscorer doesn’t get the investment juices flowing, Paddy Power go 13/10 on the anytime market for him however, and that is far more attractive. And for Chelsea do we need look further than Drogba? 9/1 generally to score first is decent, whilst 3/1 for anytime is an option. 4 times a first goalscorer for Chelsea in Europe this season, the odds are good.

Turnaround

If, dear reader, you have patiently followed me this far, you will have picked up a certain amount of contradiction in the highlighted bets thus far. If i were to follow my track thus far, and things were to go to my predictions, the halfway point will be reached in Germany with Chelsea 1-0 to the good with a Drogba goal the difference between the two sides. But you said you were confident of a Bayern win early on Marc? That’s right, and indeed I still do! What we have in Bayern Munich is a side that just works away at an end game. In the second leg against Real Madrid in Spain we saw Real go ahead with two early goals from Ronaldo. The key here is to simply watch Bayerns reaction to looking like going out of the competition at this point. One would expect a degree of urgency, some searching, hopeful long balls forward, passing and rushing; but Bayern showed none of it. They got hold of the ball, kept it, slowed the match down and took stock of the situation. Carefully and methodically they regrouped and understood the task in hand. In all honesty, I for one was surprised at how quickly the approach paid off, Robben getting a goal back on 27 minutes to level the match on aggregate, eventually enough to take them through extra time and to the penalty shoot out. At no point did Bayern look rushed or harried into decisions, organised and machine-like in defence and not overly committal up front, they knew that preventing Real scoring another was more important than scoring another themselves. It was that measured, organised and typically German engineered approach that saw them through. What this is all leading up to, is that IF Chelsea go in at Half time in front, i feel there is every chance that Bayern can turn the game round in the second half. Suddenly 28/1 for Chelsea/Bayern on the HT/FT market looks worth a speculative interest.

Final Score

It could be anything. previous meetings between the sides are limited, the last twice, the home sides have won, Bayern 3-2 here at the Allianz in 2005, whilst the earlier reverse fixture went to Chelsea 4-2. Goals could be on the agenda once again.  Forget 1-0 Bayern Munich, They have played 30 games at home since recording that scoreline. OVER 1.5 Goals for the match is 1.36, for it is buying money and will be my main bet. Just 3 of the 30 Bayern home games have ended with a single goal or less. Finally, I’m going all out by predicting the full time score as well. I’ve narrowed down the options to, 2-1 (8/1 Betvictor), 3-1 (14/1 generally), 3-2 (28/1 generally), and perhaps, 2-2 (20/1 Betvictor) just in case. It would be mad to cover all four given the other bets I have now on the game, so I am going for the 3-1 and just in case the 20/1 for the 2-2 is big.

I don’t recommend a mirror of all my bets, but please feel free to pick and choose as you see fit. With full cover, one of the larger odds will have to land to show profit. Enjoy the game, and only bet what you can afford.

Champions League Final Bets: 9pts total

Both teams to score @ 1.9 Betfair

Bayern Munich win (90 mins)  @ 5/6

Under 1.5 First Half Goals @ 1.46

Over 1.5 Goals (90 mins) @ 1.36

Half Time Score 0-1 @ 13/2

Drogba FGS @ 9/1

HT/FT Chelsea/Bayern @ 28/1

Correct Score 3-1 @ 14/1 & 2-2 @ 20/1

 

 

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