Bayern Munich midfielders Arturo Vidal and Sebastian Rode are doubtful for their Champions League Group F game at home to Dinamo Zagreb with the German champions eager to snap their opponents’ 45-game unbeaten run, coach Pep Guardiola said on Monday.
Chile international Vidal is feeling pain in his knee while Rode is nursing a knock, Guardiola said, adding he would have just 14 or 15 fit players for Tuesday’s game.
Bayern, who have won every league and German Cup game as well as their Champions League opener so far, are already without wingers Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery as well as defenders Medhi Benatia and Holger Badstuber among others. Javi Martinez only recently came back from a months-long injury break.
“I don’t think Arturo will be ready,” said Guardiola. “We are only a few, only 14, 15 players. So we will need one or two from the second team. Sebastian also has some problems.”
The Spaniard also ruled out a return for Robben, saying it was still too soon for the Dutchman, who has recovered from his own injury.
Bayern won their opening group game at Olympiakos and victory over Dinamo, who beat Arsenal in their first game, would put them in the driving seat.
“It is a big opportunity for us to take up a good position for the games against Arsenal,” said Guardiola, chasing his first European title with the Germans in his third season in charge.
“You have to win every home game if you want to advance and I have a lot of confidence in my team.”
He warned, however, that Dinamo’s 45-match unbeaten run in all competitions was a sign of their opponents’ consistency.
Dinamo, who beat Osijek 4-1 on Friday, have not lost in any competition since a 1-0 defeat by Astra Giurgiu in the Europa League group stage on November 27 2014.
“You would think Arsenal would win their opening game. But the Croats are now 45 games without defeat. No need to say more except that they have a lot of talent, a lot of quality,” said Guardiola.
“We did it well in our first (group) game but now we have to keep going. We have to be very serious in our game.”