Benfica vs. Bayern Munich: Five players to watch

Bayern Munich forward Robert Lewandowski is enjoying sensational run of form. (Photo by Lukas Schulze/Getty Images)
Bayern Munich forward Robert Lewandowski is enjoying sensational run of form. (Photo by Lukas Schulze/Getty Images) /

Bayern Munich resumes their UEFA Champions League group stage campaign on Wednesday against Benfica. Die Roten has remained undefeated through two fixtures in the group stage and will be looking for another three points in Portugal. Benfica is also undefeated in the group stage as they were held by Dynamo Kyiv to a scoreless draw on Matchday One and then got past Barcelona on Matchday Two. As a result, they trail Bayern by two points in the group. Here are five key players to watch on Wednesday night as the top two clubs in Group E face off.

Robert Lewandowski

The striker was back on the scoresheet in the Bundesliga on Sunday. After failing to score in his two previous league fixtures, Lewandowski put together a fantastic two-goal performance to help guide the visitors to a massive 5-1 victory over Bayer Leverkusen.

With four goals already scored in the Champions League this season, Lewandowski will be looking to surpass the five-goal mark in the European competition on Wednesday. He has recorded a brace against both Barcelona and Dynamo Kyiv and only trails the competition’s current top scorer Sebastien Haller by one goal.

Having scored three goals in four appearances against Benfica during his career at Bayern, Lewandowski is going to present the most difficult test the hosts have faced this season. Benfica has conceded just five goals so far this season in their domestic league and Champions League campaigns. However, they have yet to face a world-class striker such as Lewandowski yet and the Bayern star has the potential to be the main difference-maker in this fixture.

Darwin Nunez

Benfica’s top scorer played a key role in their 3-0 victory over Barcelona on Matchday Two. Nunez recorded a brace in the win to open his goal account in the Champions League this season. The 22-year-old has also registered two additional two-goal performances this season in the Primeira Liga with braces against Santa Clara and Boavista. With six goals in ten appearances, he will certainly be one to watch for on Wednesday night.

Thomas Muller

The Bayern veteran is only one of two current Bayern players who have scored against Benfica in previous Champions League seasons. Muller scored in the second leg of the 2015/16 quarterfinals and his goal allowed Bayern to progress to the semifinals. He enters this latest meeting with the Portuguese club in fantastic form as he has registered at least one goal or assist in five of his last six appearances for Bayern in all competitions.

Roman Yaremchuk

Benfica’s summer signing has started his career in Portugal in fantastic form. The Ukrainian international has recorded four goals and one assist in six league appearances and has been one of the club’s top offensive leaders so far this season.

After scoring 17 goals last season in Belgium’s top flight, Yaremchuk certainly has the potential to be one of the main sources of goals for Benfica. Although he has yet to record a goal or an assist in the Champions League this season, he has the offensive potential to test Bayern’s backline on Wednesday.

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Serge Gnabry

Gnabry has recorded one goal and one assist in his two Champions League appearances this season. More recently, he produced a fantastic performance against Leverkusen with two goals in the 5-1 win. His two goals increased his season total to six goals in all competitions for Bayern. The German international is now the third-highest goal scorer on the team in the current term. Against Benfica, Gnabry will be looking to add to his season goal total as he nears the ten-goal mark.