Bayern Munich showed just how good they could be when they crushed Arsenal 3-1 at the Emirates. The German side were superb throughout the match, both in defense and attack.
Jupp Heynckes's team are in a great position coming into the second leg and will be huge favorites of reaching the Champions League quarterfinal.
Bayern were simply tremendous on Tuesday and looked like a team capable of winning the whole tournament. After their performance at the Emirates, a lot of people will be expecting the Bavarians to avenge last season's heartbreak and take the trophy this May.
Without further ado, here are five reasons why Bayern Munich will win this year's Champions League.
Bayern Munich have a huge advantage over the remaining Champions League teams in that the Germans sit comfortably in the Bundesliga.
While teams like Manchester United and Paris Saint Germain still have a lot to worry about in their domestic seasons, Munich sits 15 points clear of second with 12 matches to play.
Jupp Heynckes and his side will of course take nothing for granted but it seems impossible that Bayern surrender their lead. They have looked unstoppable this year and it is almost certain that they win the league.
Having such a big gap at the top of the table will allow Bayern to rest players before Champions League matches.
Bayern Munich's defense has been absolutely phenomenal this season.
In their 33 matches, the Bavarians have conceded just 16 goals in all competitions.
While Manuel Neuer was criticized after the Arsenal match, the German keeper has kept 16 clean sheets in 22 league appearances—allowing just seven goals in domestic play.
Of course, all the credit should not be given to the 26-year-old.
Bayern's back-four has been solid all season. Jerome Boateng has formed a great partnership with the Brazilian centre-back Dante, while Philipp Lahm and David Alaba have been great as well.
Munich have an extra line of defense as Bastian Schweinsteiger and Javi Martinez sit in front of the back-four.
Against Arsenal on Tuesday, the two midfielders were superb and cut out multiple Gunners attacks.
In Bayern's 16 home matches this season, they have won 13, scoring 48 and conceding 10. In their 17 away games, they have won 14, scoring 39 and conceding six times.
Home advantage means nothing to the Bavarians.
Last year, we saw them lose the Champions League final at their very own Allianz Arena. This season, they have if anything been stronger away from home.
In the knockout stages of European competition, it is essential for a team to be on top form no matter the venue.
In addition to their strength in defense, Bayern Munich have a plethora of attacking options.
Recently, the Germans have started most games with an attacking front-four of Mario Mandzukic, Frank Ribery, Toni Kroos and Thomas Muller. This, by itself, is already a very strong offense.
However, when you include Philipp Lahm's countless runs from defense and Bastian Schweinsteiger's midfield passes, Bayern Munich are virtually unstoppable.
In addition, the Bavarians have lots of quality on the bench with Arjen Robben, Xherdan Shaqiri and, of course, Mario Gomez.
Jupp Heynckes' third stint as Bayern Munich manager will come to an end this June. The former Mönchengladbach star coached the Bavarians from 1987 to 1991, for two months in 2009 and returned once again in 2011.
Heynckes has just one minor trophy (German Supercup) in his third stint as Munich coach and he will want to retire on a high note. With the way his team is playing, it is certainly possible for the 67-year-old to finish his managerial career with a treble.
The Bayern players, especially the senior stars, will want Jupp Heynckes to leave Munich with as many trophies as possible.