By DAN KARELL
Two of the world’s soccer heavyweights collide today in the Allianz Arena, as Bayern Munich play host to FC Barcelona in the first leg of the Champions League semifinals (2:45pm, Fox Soccer Channel).
Barcelona will be led by Lionel Messi, who has recovered from his hamstring injury and will start today. Messi will be called up on to try and help Barca enjoy better first-leg success than in the previous two rounds of the knockout stages. The Spanish club has fallen, 2-0, to AC Milan and tied Paris Saint-Germain, 2-2, in their first-leg matches.
Bayern won’t be nervous though, having won 11 of their last 13 Champions League matches at home, and having lost at home just once this season in the Bundesliga. With a fully fit squad, there are more than enough options for manager Jupp Heynckes to choose from.
If you will be watching today’s match (and let’s face it, most of you will) please feel free to share your thoughts, opinions and some play-by-play in the comments section below.
Enjoy the action (You can see a closer look at today’s match-up after the jump):
BAYERN MUNICH vs. BARCELONA
2:45pm, Fox Soccer Channel
Players to Watch: BAYERN MUNICH – Franck Ribery, Thomas Müller, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Arjen Robben; BARCELONA – Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta, Xavi Hernandez, David Villa.
Quick Kicks: Bayern Munich have a nearly full roster, and even so, will have a good selection headache to deal with for Tuesday’s match. Mario Mandzukic is suspended, so the starting forward will either be Claudio Pizarro or Mario Gomez. Toni Kroos is still injured with a torn muscle in his hip. Barcelona will be without Javier Mascherano and Carles Pujol, but were boosted by Eric Abidal’s first start since his liver transplant last Saturday.
If you will be watching today’s Champions League action, please feel free to share your thoughts, opinions and some play-by-play in the comments section below.
Enjoy the action.