That Lazio-Bayern half? Largely men against boys. Lewandowski scored from an absolute gift by Musacchio; Musiala finished brilliantly; Sane tapped in after fine work from Coman. Lazio don’t look awful going forwards, and should have had a penalty – but they are so vulnerable at the back.
Half-time: Lazio 0-3 Bayern
Dear oh dear. Bayern so good and in such control. You could end this tie right now.
44 min: Lazio earn a corner but can’t respond and their task looks hopeless now.
Goal! Lazio 0-3 Bayern (Sane, 42)
Coman streaks away down the left like lightning after another Lazio error. He twists this way and that, Reina parries his shot, and Sane taps in the rebound. Surely we are done, not a quarter of the way through this tie.
42 min: Lulic has made a difference and can’t quite pick out Luis Alberto in the box when well placed. So what happens next …
40 min: Ooh, they nearly do get that goal after Lulic keeps the ball alive and tees up Immobile for a shot that’s deflected wide! That was goalbound. Neuer punches the corner away from under his bar.
39 min: Still hard to find much hope for Lazio. They have to score the next goal in this tie really, but don’t look at all like doing it. They look caught between poles.
36 min: Reina makes an unorthodox save, kicking away Lewandowski’s shot after Musiala does well.
33 min: Bayern haven’t really created anything since the second goal, although Lewandowski is crowded out as I type that. They can play this entirely on their terms now, and step up the tempo as & when.
31 min: Yes, here is the Bosnian, Lulic to replace the hapless Musacchio. That’ll be a tactical switch.
28 min: Do Lazio go hell for leather to get back into this, or make sure it doesn’t get worse? It’s hard to do that, whatever you do – might as well have a go. Luis Alberto is up for that, but a bit too much so, and is booked for a foul.
26 min: Milinkovic-Savic forces a save from Neuer from 20 yards. Such a shame for Lazio, that goal, given they’d started to settle. But Bayern are just so good.
Goal! Lazio 0-2 Bayern (Musiala, 24)
About that … it’s some finish from Musiala, and an early 18th birthday present. That’s on Friday; today’s goal is laid on by excellent work from Davies and Goretzka, and drilled low to Reina’s right from 19 yards with incredible precision and composure. That’s the difference, right there.
23 min: Decent sight for Luis Alberto after a sweeping Lazio move, but he can’t beat Neuer at his near post. Again though, they’re starting to look as if they can compete.
21 min: That really did look like a penalty, I’m not really sure how Bayern have got away with that. Still, a few suggestions Lazio are coming to the party.
19 min: Lazio scream for a penalty after Milinkovic-Savic, coming alive, bundles through and is clipped by Boateng. That looks like a fair shout to me … but a free-kick is give the other way, perhaps for offside in the subsequent move but a bit mystifyingly.
17 min: Better from Lazio. Lazzari sprints down the right but Boateng heads away. At the other end, Sane can’t quite get enough purchase on an elaborate backheeled effort.
14 min: Kimmich is released by a glorious Sane backheel but has to settle for a corner, which brings little. Bayern could win the tie tonight, and then some, if they carry on like this.
13 min: Lazio are at sixes and sevens right now. They just can’t get out. Bayern keep on coming.
11 min: I think it was Musacchio who, without looking, passed the ball backwards and looked on in horror as Lewandowski pounced. You can’t give him chances like that. Lazio have an uphill battle already.
Goal! Lazio 0-1 Bayern (Lewandowski 9)
Ohhhhh dear. A terrible backpass puts it on a plate for the old poacher, who rounds Reina and slots in with a minimum of fuss!
7 min: Most of the early possession is Bayern’s, as you’d expect. Imagine the atmosphere inside a packed Stadio Olimpico for this one, if times were different! They come close to silencing the imaginary fans when Sule surges forward and his centre is cut out just before Lewandowski can pounce. They keep the pressure on following the corner and a drilled ball across flicks *just* beyond Lewandowski off Reina’s glove.
4 min: Lazio venture forward through Correa but the move’s momentum fizzles out a bit. They look smooth enough in possession though.
3 min: A lofted ball over the top finds Coman in behind and if he can volley it across Lewandowski has a tap-in. He can’t.
1 min: Lazzari concedes a very soft early corner but Bayern don’t make the most of it. Lazio can’t go conceding early.
Bayern have named only six subs, they’re a bit threadbare with a range of injury issues. Thomas Muller is the biggest-name miss.
The teams are strolling out in Rome – it’s Lazio’s first knock-out stage tie for more than 20 years! I think there might be a few goals in it.
Looking forward very much to seeing England’s … or Germany’s? … Jamal Musiala in action today. This profile by Ed Aarons from a few months back is worth your time.
There is a Premier League game currently going on and, in that, it’s currently Leeds 2-0 Southampton.
Lazio don’t have any of those old 90s names, not anymore! But they do have some belting players. Sergej Milinkovic-Savic is up there with the world’s most gifted playmakers on his day; we all know Lucas Leiva; Ciro Immobile’s up front means we have two masterful centre-forwards on show today.
As for Bayern … perhaps they’re not the invincible machine we trailed. I mean, they pretty much are, but in their last two league fixtures they drew 3-3 at home with Arminia Bielefeld and lost 2-1 at Eintracht Frankfurt. A post-Club World Cup slump? Could be. Now’s the time to snap out of it.
When I think of Lazio I still think of Boksic, Signori, Di Matteo, Winter, Casiraghi, Fuser. Am I just stuck in the 90s?
Big game elsewhere – Simon Burnton brings you Atletico Madrid v Chelsea!
Lazio: Reina, Patric, Acerbi, Musacchio, Lazzari, Milinkovic-Savic, Lucas Leiva, Luis Alberto, Marusic, Correa, Immobile. Subs: Strakosha, Pereira, Hoedt, Parolo, Escalante, Lulic, Caicedo, Cataldi, Alia, Akpa Akpro, Muriqi, Fares.
Bayern Munich: Neuer, Süle, Boateng, Alaba, Davies, Kimmich, Goretzka, Sané, Musiala, Coman, Lewandowski. Subs: Martínez, Choupo-Moting, Sarr, Hernández, Roca, Hoffmann.
These are the chaaaaaaampiooooooons! No really, these are. Bayern Munich have rolled into Rome and, as usual, they mean business. You’d be smart to call this season’s Champions League a two-horse race between them and Manchester City, I reckon, and while tonight’s game has a hearty dose of glamour attached to it they’re clear favourites to get the upper hand over Lazio.
Simone Inzaghi’s team are a relatively lowly sixth in Serie A – although, boy, they do have some good players. They took four points of Borussia Dortmund in the group stage of this, their first Champions League campaign in 13 years. Can that inspire them to similar heroics against crack German opposition?
Stay tuned and we’ll find out! It’s a fascinating tie, this one, and I’d love to hear your thoughts and predictions in the buildup.