Shakhtar Win – 13/2
Bayern Munich Win – 1/8
Shakhtar Donetsk vs Bayern Munich – Bayern Munich to win 3-1, Bayern are just too strong and in excellent form Neutrals may want Shakhtar to do well but an upset is highly unlikely.
Nine time Ukrainian champions Shakhtar are looking forward to hosting German champions Bayern Munich in the first leg of the Champions League round of 16 clashes.
The last time these two teams meet in a competitive match was way back in 1980.Shakhtar are the hosts here but they are playing the match at the Arena Lviv which is 800 miles away from their original home of Donbass stadium (Due to the political unrest in Ukraine).
Bayern Munich booked their place in the round of 16 by progressing as the group champions from the so called “Group of Death” which consisted the likes of Manchester City, CSKA Moscow and AS Roma. They won 5 of out 6 games in the group drawing one game versus Manchester City.
Shakhtar however will be a different challenge for the five time Champions League winners. Bayern come into this match after beating Hamburg SV 8-0 in the Bundesliga on Saturday with Mario Gotze, Thomas Muller, Frank Ribery, Robert Lewandowski and Arjen Robben all getting their names on the score sheet.
The win helped Bayern remain top of the Bundesliga 8 points clear of second placed Wolfsburg. Jerome Boateng is set to return for the German giants and will partner Mehdi Benatia at the centre of defence.
It will be interesting to see who Pep Guardiola picks to plays up front along with Robert Lewandowski and Arjen Robben – Muller or Gotze.
Shakhtar are forced to play their home match at the Arena Lviv 800 miles away from their original home of Donbass Arena.
The defending Ukrainian champions are currently 2nd in the domestic league 5 points behind arch rivals Dynamo Kviv.
Shakhtar qualified as the runners-up from their group which had the likes of Porto (Qualified as the group leaders), Athletic Bilbao and BATE Borisov. They have won the domestic league for the past 5 consecutive seasons and their best performance in the Europe was their UEFA Cup win in 2009.
Shakhtar will be pinning their hopes on Vice-Captain Luis Adriano who has been in brilliant form this season especially in the Champions league scoring nine goals from 5 games so far.
Bayern are the heavy favourites and there is no doubt about that. The only thing that may stop the German Champions from reaching the quarter finals will be complacency. When taking the look at the last five matches of both the teams they both have identical records with 3 wins, 1 draw and one loss.
Shakhtar will need to win this match if they are to have any hope of progressing to the quarters. Shakhtar haven’t played a competitive match since their last Champions’ League group match vs Athletic in December.
Shakhtar will be hoping to bring some joy to their fans and to their country that has been gripped with political unrest.