These two familiar foes meet in the International Champions Cup in Los Angeles. This will be Bayern’s first pre-season, with Arsenal coming in to this off the back of a 3-0 victory against Colorado Rapids.
With the ongoing saga surround club captain: Laurent Koscielny’ the focus has shifted away slightly from the football that Arsenal played in their opening pre-season match. Granted, the opponents aren’t of the same calibre of Bayern Munich but Unai Emery will have been very happy with how his young guns played. However I would expect to see the more experienced players getting pitch time from the off in this one.
It’ll be a similar story for Bayern Munich, who are in somewhat of a rebuilding process with several key players leaving this summer. Most notably the wide combo of Ribery and Robben. Nico Kovacs is still far from finalising the squad that will undertake another Bundesliga title defence, so expect to see plenty of tweaking and tinkering throughout the game.
Bayern are the favourites for this at a price of 1.91. Arsenal are out at 3.6. It’s tough to call, I’d be more interested in the markets involving goals. Over 2.5 goals and both teams to score both look like excellent value at 1.5 each.
As mentioned, Arsenal fielded a very youthful side for their first pre-season match, but I do expect that to change here. New signing Gabriel Martinelli was the standout performer, many know very little about the Brazilian but he looked like a real talent; pace, dribbling and a solid finish when required. He’s got the impenetrable front two of Aubameyang and Lacazette in front of him but he’ll be keen to make a real statement at being their back up, he could play in a wider area or just as a substitute for this one.
The dynamic duo up front join the likes of Mesut Ozil, Sokratis, Bernd Leno, Granit Xhaka and Henrikh Mkhitaryan as payers who saw very little, if any action against Colorado. They could all come in to the starting line up here.
Bayern could hand debuts to new signings Benjamin Pavard and Jann-Fiete Arp. Pavard had attracted attention from Arsenal themselves; the French World Cup winner will be a key player for The Bavarian side this season after the departure of Mats Hummels. It looks like Bayern will field a near to full strength side, with Robert Lewandowski leading the line. The speed of Kingsley Coman and former Gunner Serge Gnabry should compliment the Polish hitman very well. Arsenal’s defence will need to be very assured. Defence was a real concern for the North Londoners last season and this will be a good early test of their progress.
I’d be building any bets you have around goals in this one. Both look to be starting their top attacking talents. My pick would be Serge Gnabry, he won Bayern’s player of the season award last year; just a couple of years after being let go by Arsenal and told by Tony Pulis he wasn’t even good enough for West Brom. It may be pre-season but the young German will have a point to prove, he’s priced at 2.88 to find the net anytime.
If I was going to side with either, it would be Bayern Munich, as it would be if these two met in a competitive setting. The Germans simply have a better squad. I would argue that Arsenal’s front two are the only players who could get anywhere near that Bayern team. If you’re fancying something with slightly higher odds – A Bayern win and over 2.5 goals is priced at 2.5.