Bayern Munich will reach the Champions League quarter-final at Chelsea’s expense.
That’s the view of former midfielder Michael Ballack.
The ex-Germany international knows the round of 16 opponents very well having played for both during his career and will be an interested spectator when the two sides clash over two legs.
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But Ballack is not sitting on the fence when it comes to predictions.
He is of the opinion that the Blues’ run in the Champions League will end in March and that’s mainly down to head coach Frank Lampard’s lack of experience at the very top level.
“Bayern are favourites, for many reasons,” Ballack said. “Experience speaks strongly in their favour.
“Chelsea’s transfer ban has compelled them to put their faith in young players. Their manager is new and inexperienced in his job, and that is a big advantage for Bayern.
“The performance levels of Bayern’s players are another plus for them. They are more stable than they were last autumn.
“Chelsea have a young team, which has the potential to explode. They have mostly young players, a bit like Borussia Dortmund.”
Ahead of the first-leg at Stamford Bridge, Bayern Munich have suffered a big injury blow with the news that Ivan Perisic will be unavailable.
The winger, who has weighed in with three assists in the Champions League despite starting just two games in the group stage, is currently out with an ankle injury and faces a race against time to be fit for the return leg next month.
However, the good news for the Bundesliga leaders is that Lucas Hernadez and Kingsley Coman are in contention for the trip to west London.
The former made his long awaited return to action as a replacement for Jerome Boateng just after the hour mark in the goalless draw with RB Leipzig at the weekend.
Meanwhile, Coman made his first appearance…