Man United vs Bayern Munich: Five top personal battles

Manchester United 3

The English and German champions meet at Old Trafford tonight in their first leg, with the hosts major underdogs.

Manchester United’s season hangs in the balance, with their match-up against Bayern Munich in the Champions League all that is left to play for.

The English side are not fancied by many against the might of the Bavarians, with a number of personal battles sure to play their part in the outcome.

Phil Jones vs Mario Gotze

This clash is a chance for Phil Jones to prove that he has the ability to fill Nemanja Vidic’s boots next season as the dominant force in United’s defence.

Although Bayern have an arsenal of attacking weaponry, Mario Gotze is arguably the most able.

Jones has successfully played in roles trying to nullify key playmakers in the past, and could well be the man to go toe-to-toe with the mercurial attacking midfielder.

Marouane Fellaini vs Bastian Schweinsteiger

United’s midfield is set to get a summer revamp but for the time being Marouane Fellaini will be charged with breaking up the dominance of Bayern’s star-studded opposition.

Although Thiago Alcantara is unavailable for the clash, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Toni Kroos will most likely line up for the visitors in the boiler room.

For United to stand a chance of avoiding defeat, their midfield will need to compete and break up Bayern’s possession play.

Wayne Rooney vs Javi Martinez

Wayne Rooney will be United’s attacking talisman as always, with the talented forward more than likely playing in the number nine role for the hosts.

Although the England international will cross paths with Jerome Boateng and Dante, Javi Martinez is likely to be paying the former Everton prodigy a lot of attention.

United need Rooney to bring the likes of Adnan Januzaj and Shinji Kagawa into the game, with the home side relying on the Englishman to provide inspiration.

Adnan Januzaj vs Philipp Lahm

This match-up will be a clash between youthful exuberance and seasoned experience.

Without Juan Mata or Robin van Persie, the teenager will be an important man on the offensive for David Moyes’ team.

Lahm has the capabilities to play in midfield, but will most likely start at right-back and be up against Januzaj.

Januzaj has all the skills and ability to be a game changer, and this match-up will be a fantastic acid test for the youngster.

Arjen Robben vs Alex Buttner

Former Chelsea man Robben played a considerable role in downing Arsenal in the last round and will be a key attacker for the Germans again here.

With Patrice Evra unavailable, Alex Buttner will get a rare chance to play and will be under incredible pressure in trying to neutralise the Dutchman.

Robben will look to cut in-field onto his left foot, and Buttner will need help from his team-mates to stop the flying winger.

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