Frank Lampard chose not to mess with success, keeping the same exact lineup and starting XI for the underdogs as against Spurs on Saturday.
And for the first 45 minutes, it looked like a wise enough decision. Bayern may have dominated possession and passing, but Chelsea managed to keep them mostly at arm’s length. On the few occasions we didn’t, Caballero was out quickly to smother shots from Lewandowski. We did get a bit lucky when Müller’s cheeky header hit the crossbar, and he (and Coman) also came close with long shots as well.
At the other end, Chelsea didn’t see much joy, even if Giroud was doing well enough against Boateng. We did break through a couple times on the right, but the ridicuously rapid Davies had the beating of Mount on pace. Alonso was able to cause some havoc on the left, drawing a good save from Neuer on at least one occasion. A Mount cross after a bit of good high pressing also just eluded the outstretched leg of Giroud.
The second half started in similar fashion, with Chelsea going close through Mount and Barkley. But then and unfortunate slip by Azpilicueta allowed Bayern to build, Lewandowski turning surprise provider for Gnabry to put the visitors into the lead.
It didn’t take long for Bayern to double their lead, with Gnabry again on target, again by way of Lewandowski who this time won a header against Azpilicueta on a rare long punt forward from Neuer.
Chelsea settled down a bit after that, with Lampard making a couple changes, then adding Pedro into the fray as well and changing the shape. But it was Bayern who found the next goal again, with perfectly executed counter.
To add insult to injury, Marcos Alonso was then sent off after video review for a hilariously soft “violent conduct” play.
So it goes.
Our city, out stadium, not our game, and certainly not our trophy.
- 3-4-3 as on Saturday, with the exact XI.
- Abraham for Giroud and Willian for Barkley in like-for-like changes at the hour-mark. Pedro on for the final 15-20 minutes, in place of Azpilicueta, with Lampard switching to a back-four.
- Jorginho will miss the second leg due to suspension after picking up a yellow card for complaining. Alonso also suspended after his soft as you like red card.
- Not much chance of a comeback after this one, though I suppose you never know.
- Next up: Bournemouth away in the league on Saturday, then Liverpool in the FA Cup a week from today. More winnable games than today (hopefully)!