Arsenal boss on United's opponents: Bayern are WEAKER this year!

Manchester United take on Bayern Munich in Champions League and while Wenger admits the Germans are favourites, they should perhaps have nothing to fear.

"At this stage of the Champions League, it’s very rare that you can say a team will win easily," pondered Arsene Wenger in his Eurosport column while glancing at how Bayern Munich are the overwhelming favourites in their Champions League quarter-final against Manchester United.

The recently-crowned Bundesliga kings tackle one of the Premier League's most underwhelming outfits this season and their recent form could seemingly not be more of a contrast as they head in to the first leg, staged at Old Trafford, this evening.

Wenger, though, writes that such an underdog status should not be encumbering for David Moyes' men but, instead, they should use it as a motivational ploy - that they can liberate themselves from their domestic strife by battling against the odds in Europe. United - argues Arsene - have nothing to lose.

"Today, when you compare Bayern to United, people say that Bayern will qualify but Manchester United still have a lot of great players.

"And when they have nothing to lose, they can be psychologically much freer. Yes, Bayern will be favourites, which is never easy for United to accept. United are not 100% confident in themselves right now. Nowadays, as soon as a big club has more than two bad results in a row, they encounter huge pressure. And the repercussions on teams can become major quickly.

"Maybe United can free themselves against Bayern, who will certainly control possession; United will try to take advantage of their physical commitment and will need the individual qualities of their forwards to make a difference."

Last season, Arjen Robben inspired Bayern to claim the Champions League title at Wembley Stadium, while also relying on accomplished stars such as Franck Ribery, Thomas Mueller, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Javi Martinez and Manuel Neuer.

In the space of one campaign, Pep Guardiola was installed as manager, Philipp Lahm was freed from a full back berth and has since become one of the more seasoned passers of the football, Toni Kroos has gone from strength to strength while Mario Goetze and Thiago have both been added to the senior roster.

Wenger, though, does not see a vast improvement in the German superclub but, rather, a decline in standards throughout that country which thus makes Bayern appear like a vastly enhanced outfit.

"I think Bayern are slightly weaker than last year – even though they have dominated the Bundesliga, I believe their domestic competition has been weaker this time round, mostly because Dortmund had a bad spell."

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for ARSENAL team updates

Register for MANCHESTER UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch