Bayern Munich host Barcelona for the conclusion of the Champions League group stage with their own knockout round qualification already assured.
One of only three teams in the competition with a 100% record from the opening five games, Bayern also lead the way for goals scored and have only conceded more than reigning champions Chelsea.
With another round of midweek fixtures on the horizon ahead of Germany’s winter break, here’s the rotated XI Julian Nagelsmann may be tempted to deploy safe in the knowledge his side will finish first regardless.
Manuel Neuer (GK) – With Alexander Nubel out on loan to Monaco, Neuer doesn’t have any youthful upstarts desperately vying for his position between the posts.
Benjamin Pavard (RB) – Given the paucity of options injuries to Bouna Sarr and Josip Stanisic have left Nagelsmann with at right back, he may well turn to his World Cup winner once more.
Tanguy Nianzou (CB) – The youngest ever Paris Saint-Germain player to make a Champions League appearance was treated to a standing ovation on his competition debut in 2019. A repeat performance would certainly suit Bayern on Wednesday.
Niklas Sule (CB) – Yet to be on the pitch while Bayern concede a Champions League goal this season, Sule may well be set for his first start since the November international break.
Omar Richards (LB) – The former Reading full back was losing 2-1 to Birmingham City in England’s second-tier this time last season, but could be afforded a first Champions League start against the Blaugrana just 12 months later.
Jamal Musiala (CM) – The youngest player in Bayern’s squad proved instrumental in breaking the deadlock against Arminia Bielefeld from a central position recently and may start there on Wednesday in light of Leon Goretzka’s iffy fitness.
Corentin Tolisso (CM) – Bayern were triumphant – to varying degrees of ease – in all three matches for which the France international replaced the irreplaceable Joshua Kimmich, a role he may reprise if Nagelsmann decides against shunting his number six straight back into action.
Thomas Muller (AM) – He may be 32 but is as vital as ever (if not more so) to Bayern’s success, and Muller can scarcely bear to be left out whatever the stage or circumstances.
Serge Gnabry (RW) – After serving an isolation period on the sidelines, midweek offers Gnabry a stress-free chance to run off the rust that quarantine may have caused.
Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting (ST) – Bayern’s decidedly second-choice striker has either scored or assisted 11 goals across a raft of cameos this season, averaging a direct goal contribution every 24 minutes.
Leroy Sane (LW) – One of only two players to have featured in every game for Bayern this season could uphold that record come the visit of Barcelona.