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Champions League: Matchday two storylines to follow

Two of the greatest strikers of the modern Bundesliga era are ready to outgun the clubs they have only just left, in the eye-catching storyline of Champions League Matchday Two.

Robert Lewandowski, the seven-time Bundesliga top scorer during a stellar career with Bayern Munich, returns to the Allianz Arena on Tuesday with new club Barcelona.

And 24 hours later, one-time Dortmund hot-shot Erling Haaland will be reunited with his former team-mates, a few weeks after he swapped the German top-flight for Manchester City in the Premier League.

City are 9/4 to win the Champions League though two of their English rivals, Liverpool and Chelsea, are on the drift after Matchday One losses, and will be desperate for three-point hauls in home tussles against Ajax and Salzburg respectively.

Bayern braced for Lewandowski return

WhatBayern Munich v Barcelona
WhereAllianz Arena, Munich
WhenTuesday 13th September, 2022, 20:00
How to watchBT Sport 4
OddsBayern Munich 4/5, Draw 10/3, Barcelona 11/4

Two months after quitting Bayern for Barcelona after eight goal-drenched years in Bavaria, Lewandowski returns to the Allianz Arena to show his former employers what they let go.

Not that they need reminding. The classy Pole scored 344 goals in 375 games with Bayern, including four in their last four meetings with Barca.

And he's hit the ground running in Spain, jumping to the top of La Liga's scoring charts with six goals in his first five outings for the Catalan giants.

Now his sights are trained on a club where he was worshipped for the best part of a decade and he's 6/5 to score at any time and 6/1 to score two or more on Tuesday. A Lewandowski hat-trick is a 25/1 chance.

He knows better than anyone that Bayern have got the whip-hand over Barca of late, the German giants having scored 17 goals against the Spanish side in their last four Champions League showdowns.

They are 4/5 to continue that winning streak though 11/4 shots Barcelona are being slowly but surely revived under Xavi and this should be far closer than recent mismatches.

Hotshot Haaland looking to extend scoring streak

WhatManchester City v Borussia Dortmund, Champions League
WhereEtihad Stadium, Manchester
WhenWhen: 20:00, Wednesday 14th September, 2022
How to watchBT Sport 2
OddsMan City 2/11, Borussia Dortmund 12/1, Draw 13/2

He's the new hero of Manchester City and a very recent idol at Borussia Dortmund which means Haaland is without doubt the centre of attention at the Etihad Stadium.

The giant Norwegian has slotted seamlessly into life with the Premier League champs, scoring in six of the seven league and cup games in which he has played. He's 1/2 to score at any time against former club Dortmund, and 2/1 to emulate what he did in City's opening-night 4-0 romp at Sevilla by scoring twice.

Not that Dortmund need reminding of their former poster-boy's talents - Haaland banged in 86 goals in 89 matches for them and they could certainly have done with him on Saturday as they crashed to a dismal 3-0 loss in Leipzig.

Dortmund are still going well - they would have gone top with a win at Leipzig - and easily batted away Copenhagen in their Group G opener.

But there's no doubt they would rather be relying on Haaland for goals than Anthony Modeste, who has managed only one in six since jumping ship from Cologne in August.

Liverpool need lift-off after Napoli nightmare

WhatLiverpool v Ajax
WhereAnfield, Liverpool
WhenTuesday 13th September, 2022, 20:00
How to watchBT Sport 2
OddsLiverpool 1/2, Draw 15/4, Ajax 9/2

Two-week gaps between Champions League games are a thing of the past - in Liverpool's case it isn't even a one-game gap, and that could be worrying.

Less than a week after last year's finalists were mauled 4-1 in Napoli, they step out in front of The Kop to take on free-scoring Ajax in a match which surely promises goals. Even over three goals is a 10/11 shot.

Liverpool need to win this Group A encounter having been shunted out to 8/1 to win the title.

The problem is that they aren't playing well - just two wins in seven matches so far - and Ajax are more than decent enough to capitalise on any frailties in the Reds' camp.

Alfred Schreuder's Dutchmen are absolutely flying, both at home and abroad. They top the Eredivisie with six wins out of six and 21 goals scored and top Group A after thumping Rangers 4-0 in their opener.

Liverpool would take a messy, mucky 1-0 win right now - that's a 12/1 shot - as Klopp looks to kick-start his club's campaign.

New Leipzig leader faces Real crunch

WhatReal Madrid v Leipzig, Champions League
WhereBernabeu Stadium, Madrid
When20:00, Wednesday 14th September 2022
How to watchBT Sport
OddsReal Madrid 8/15, Leipzig 9/2, Draw 15/4

You bring in a new manager to make an impact and no one can argue with what Marco Rose inspired in his first outing as Leipzig head coach.

Appointed just days after Domenico Tedesco paid the price for the German club's horrific 4-1 humbling by Shakhtar Donetsk, Rose became an instant hero at the Red Bull Arena by masterminding Leipzig to a 3-0 romp past one of his former clubs, Borussia Dortmund.

He'd have been as pleased with the clean sheet as the goals scored by Willi Orban, Dominik Szoboszlai and Amadou Haidara, and it sets his new charges up with renewed confidence for the ultimate acid test at reigning champs and La Liga leaders Real Madrid.

Real haven't put a foot wrong this season. They have played seven, won seven, five in the league, plus a 2-0 win against Eintracht Frankfurt and last week they won 3-0 at Celtic.

However, they welcome the Germans minus striker Karim Benzema. Admittedly, they aren’t short of quality firepower but Rose will be thrilled that Benzema is an absentee as his side aim to exorcise the ghosts of that shock mauling by Shakhtar.

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