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Picking a Combined Manchester United-Bayern Munich XI

Rob DawsonManchester United CorrespondentMarch 31, 2014

Picking a Combined Manchester United-Bayern Munich XI

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    Jon Super

    Manchester United head into their Champions League quarter-final with reigning European champions Bayern Munich as heavy underdogs.

    So there's little surprise that a combined XI from the two squads features plenty of Pep Guardiola's German champions.

    It is a measure of how far United have fallen since playing in three of the four Champions League finals between 2008 and 2011.

    That's something David Moyes will have to address in the summer if he hopes to reach the standard set by Bayern in the last two seasons.

    Feel free to use the comments section below to agree, disagree or pick your own XI.

Goalkeeper

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    Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

    It's perhaps the one position that hasn't caused any great concern for David Moyes this season. 

    David de Gea has been one of the only members of United's squad to enhance his reputation during a difficult campaign.

    Bayern also have a fine goalkeeper in Manuel Neuer. He was Schalke's standout performer during the Champions League semi-final with United in 2011, earning rave reviews from Sir Alex Ferguson.

    It's a difficult decision, but Neuer's extra experience and larger trophy haul means the German just edges it.

Defenders

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    Handout/Getty Images

    Philipp Lahm has been used in midfield occasionally by Pep Guardiola this season, but he remains one of the best right-backs in the world.

    And David Alaba can lay claim to the same title at left-back.

    Picking the centre-halves is a little more difficult. 

    Not so long ago, Nemanja Vidic would have been an automatic choice, but he's had a poor season by his own high standards. Still, at his best he's a formidable defender and fantastic leader.

    Alongside him is Brazilian Dante, who has been a regular for Bayern this season.

Midfielders

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    Jon Super

    The most difficult decisions to make are in midfield, but only because Bayern have got too many good midfielders to fit on one team.

    It's the area United are weakest, and they will need make a significant investment to rectify it in the summer.

    Guardiola has Javi Martinez, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Thiago Alcantara, Toni Kroos and Mario Goetze to choose from.

    A pairing of Martinez and Schweinsteiger with United's Juan Mata in front of it would cause plenty of problems for most teams. 

    However, Bayern won't have to worry about Mata this time, with the Spanish playmaker cup-tied for the remainder of this season's competition.

Forwards

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    Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

    Robin van Persie won't play against Bayern while he continues his recovery from the knee injury he suffered after his hat-trick against Olympiakos in the last round. 

    But the Dutchman is still one of the best strikers in the world and gets the nod at the head of a front three.

    Either side of him is Frenchman Franck Ribery, who was shortlisted for last year's Ballon d'Or, and German Thomas Mueller.

    Wayne Rooney and Arjen Robben can count themselves unlucky to miss out, although it would be useful to have them on the bench just in case.

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