Summary

  • Bayern travel to Atletico in Wednesday's first leg (kick-off 20:45CEST/18:45GMT).
  • Bavarians gunning for the treble in Pep Guardiola's last season in charge.
  • Winner will face either Manchester City or Real Madrid in the final.

After successfully negotiating their way past SL Benfica in the last eight, FC Bayern München take on Club Atletico de Madrid at the Estadio Vicente Calderon in Wednesday's UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg.

The Bundesliga leaders are aiming to reach the final of Europe's premier club competition for the fourth time in seven seasons, but will not be underestimating an Atletico side that ousted tournament holders FC Barcelona in the last round.

UEFA Champions League semi-final (kick-off 20:45CEST/18:45GMT)

Wednesday 27 April

Club Atletico de Madrid vs FC Bayern München - match preview

22:38 - Back tomorrow

That brings to an end our liveblog for today. We will be bringing you more build-up to Bayern's visit to Atletico in the Champions League semi-final first leg tomorrow, though, as the Bundesliga leaders aim to lay the foundation for a sixth Champions League final.

22:02 - Schwarzenbeck's verdict

Hans-Georg "Katsche" Schwarzenbeck, whose 120th-minute equaliser in the 1974 European Cup final salvaged a 1-1 draw as Bayern went on to win the competition in a replay, believes his former club will get the better of Atletico in the sides' Champions League semi-final tie.

"Atletico are difficult opponents. They are awkward to play against and have to be taken seriously. The main thing for Bayern will be to get at least a draw away from home. That would put them in a good position for the return in Munich. I'll be at the stadium then. I'm convinced: FC Bayern will reach the final!”

Jerome Boateng has rejoined the Bayern squad following three months on the sidelines. © imago

21:08 - Boateng "ready"

Jerome Boateng revealed he is "ready to help the team" after sitting out the past three months with a groin injury. “I'm feeling good," the Germany centre-back (pictured) said. "I'll give it everything when I'm out on the pitch.”

Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge seemed equally happy with the 27-year-old's return. “It's important to have him back available for the final weeks of the season. I don't know whether Guardiola will play him |on Wednesday], however."

20:15 - Rummenigge: Want to continue this dream

Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge admitted his pride at reaching the competition's semi-finals for a fifth consecutive time. “We're proud and happy," he said, adding: "When you're in the semi-finals you have one goal of course, a place in the final. We'll do everything to continue this dream.”

The former Germany international said he would be happy if Bayern managed to take a draw home to Munich. "We don't want to lose and ideally score a goal. That would be a good result going into the second leg."

19:28 - Pep talk

Bayern boss Pep Guardiola seemed in confident mood as he joined the press conference.

19:10 - Lahm and Alonso talk Atleti

19:00 - Question time

Don't forget we'll be bringing you all the key quotes from Bayern's pre-match press conference with captain Philipp Lahm, midfielder Xabi Alonso and head coach Pep Guardiola.

18:48 - The stage is set

bundesliga.com's man on the ground, Alexander Barklage, is readying himself for this evening's pre-match press conference at the Estadio Vincente Calderon.

Translation: Quiet here, but that'll change tomorrow.

© Alexander Barklage

18:17 - Lewandowski: 'It will be tough'

Bayern goal machine Robert Lewandowski is relishing the challenge of facing Simeone's stingy Atletico. "They have the best defence in the Spanish Liga," the Poland international told uefa.com. "As a striker, it's a challenge to face a side that concede so few, but I'm happy to be playing against them. We know it will be tough, but we are Bayern München. I hope we prepare well for it, don't make mistakes and show we want to play in the final." Lewandowski has scored 38 goals in all competitions this season, including eight in the Champions League. Only Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo has netted more (16).

© gettyimages

17:40 - Third time lucky?

Bayern have not had the best of luck on Spanish soil down the years. Even Guardiola's knowledge of La Liga opposition has done little to help their fortunes in Spain, where they have been beaten in the first leg of the semi-finals in each of the last two seasons and only won two of their last 12. Their overall record in Spain reads: W6, D5, L12.

17:23 - Bayern touch down

Blue skies greet team FCB as they disembark their flight from Munich.

17:17 - Is it a bird, is it a plane...?

... no, it's the mighty Bayern! They've long entered Iberian airspace and the descent into Madrid has already begun.

17:04 - Alonso exclusive

Bayern midfielder Xabi Alonso is in line to make his ninth Champions League semi-final appearance and could yet become only the second player in history after Dutch ace Clarence Seedorf to win the competition with three different clubs. The former Spain international knows what to expect at Atleti's Estadio Vicente Calderon from his time at city rivals Real Madrid CF, but insists Bayern are "well prepared". Read the full interview here.

© imago

16:39 - Five +1 reasons to believe

The best attack in Europe, experience, history, hunger and, of course, Pep Guardiola: we outline five reasons why Bayern could progress to the 2015/16 Champions League final in Milan on 28 May - right here. Perhaps it should be six, judging by this belter from Douglas Costa at the weekend:

16:10 - Guardiola: 'Atletico are solid'

Bayern's Pep Guardiola has come up against Atleti counterpart Diego Simeone only once before as a head coach, but knows Los Colchoneros have progressed significantly since losing 2-1 to his former Barcelona outfit in a La Liga match in 2011/12. "Atletico know exactly what they have to do in defence," Guardiola said when the draw was made on 15 April. "If they do not play to their best on a certain day, they are still solid. They have conceded so few goals in recent years because their structure is so good. They press aggressively and if they do not win the ball back, they retreat deep and play very compact. The atmosphere in the Vicente Calderon is the best in Europe." We’ll be hearing more from Bayern’'s master tactician later this evening when he takes to the podium for his customary pre-match press conference (19:00CEST).

© gettyimages / Matthias Hangst/Bongarts

15:21 - Bayern fans in Madrid

bundesliga.com's roaming reporter, Alexander Barklage, has just sent in this snap of two rather jolly Bayern fans at Madrid airport. It won't be all that long before the players touch down...

© DFL DEUTSCHE FUSSBALL LIGA

15:07 - Berni meets Indi

Woodland buddies Berni the bear and Indi the raccoon look to be having a blast at the Estadio Vicente Calderon. Wonder if Bayern mascot Berni has tried on his Atleti counterpart's fetching Apache hat...?

14:56 - Final objective

Bayern chief executive Karl-Heinz Rummenigge didn't beat around the bush when speaking to journalists at Munich airport this afternoon:

14:42 - 'Lewandowski and Müller hard to stop'

As the Bayern camp prepare to board their flight to Madrid, here's a look at what some of the Atleti players have been saying ahead of tomorrow's semi-final first leg:

Filipe Luis (Atletico defender): "It'll be tough, but we have a chance."

Augusto Fernandez (Atletico midfielder): "We're playing a club with a glorious history, we're the underdogs."

Jan Oblak (Atletico goalkeeper): "Both matches will be close. [Robert] Lewandowski and [Thomas] Müller are hard to stop, but we believe in ourselves."

13:21 - Martinez: 'We have to go full throttle'

Defensive specialist Javi Martinez says Bayern will have to be at their very best to overcome an Atletico side that have conceded a competition joint-low five goals in 2015/16. "They're one of the best teams in Europe defensively," the 27-year-old Spain international told club website fcbayern.de. "All 11 men on the pitch play their part, from the strikers to goalkeeper [Jan] Oblak. They're dangerous on the break with quick players like [Fernando] Torres, [Antoine] Griezmann or [Yannick] Carrasco. They have players with good passing qualities like Gabi, Koke and Saul [Niguez]. They're hard to beat, and for me personally they're the toughest potential semi-final opponents. We have to give 100 percent, full throttle!"

© imago

12:54 - All aboard the Bayern team bus

Quick shower and change for the Bayern players, who are about to set off for Munich airport. Hopefully someone has packed a selfie stick...

12:29 - Thiago: 'Atletico will push us to the limit'

Bayern midfielder Thiago Alcantara is under no illusions as to the size of the task facing the Bundesliga leaders in the Champions League last four. "Atletico warrant the whole world's respect," the Spain international told bundesliga.com. "They've not been exceptional only this season, they've been doing it for years. They've developed an idea that they've pursued unerringly. Atletico are going to push us to the limit in both legs. They knocked out the Champions League holders Barcelona and are challenging both them and Real Madrid for the Spanish league title." Read the full interview here.

© DFL DEUTSCHE FUSSBALL LIGA / Simon

12:10 - Müller in prolific form

After bringing up his 150th and 151st goals for Bayern in last week's DFB Cup semi-final win over SV Werder Bremen, Thomas Müller has reason to be cheerful. The 26-year-old forward has found the net 31 times in all competitions so far this season, with eight goals coming in the 2015/16 Champions League.

11:58 - Lahm's Atletico admiration

Writing in his exclusive column for goal.com, Philipp Lahm was effusive in his praise for upcoming opponents Atleti: "Atletico have great individual players from back to front, like defender Diego Godin – who in the end cannot play against us – and forward Antoine Griezmann. They are a team with quite a low average age, a club who always develop and count on young players and they are strong opponents who deserve respect."

© gettyimages / Alexander Hassenstein

11:47 - Pass masters

Fantastic one-touch stuff from Bayern as they wind down at Säbener Straße. If anyone can break down the competition's meanest defence it's them.

11:31 - The first of many

Bayern's only previous meeting with Atletico came in the 1974 European Cup final in Brussels. Hans-Georg Schwarzenbeck's 120th-minute equaliser salvaged a 1-1 draw for the Bavarians to force the only European Cup final replay in history, which Bayern went on to win 4-0 thanks to a pair of braces from Uli Hoeness and Gerd Müller. Germany's most successful club defended their crown in 1975 and 1976, but had to wait until 2001 to get their hands on the prize again. A fifth European title formed one part of an unprecedented treble in 2012/13 in Jupp Heynckes' final season at the helm, but can Pep Guardiola repeat the trick in his?

11:10 - Boateng limbering up

Jerome Boateng is looking as fit as a fiddle following a groin injury. The Bayern centre-back has been out of action since Janaury, but will make the trip to Spain.

10:18 - Hertha Berlin 0-2 FC Bayern München

Check out how the Bavarians warmed up for their trip to Madrid in the highlights below. Includes a stunner from Douglas Costa...

10:10 - Match preview

The Bavarians will be hoping they can shake off their Spanish jinx on Wednesday evening.

Bayern lost to Real Madrid CF and FC Barcelona in the first leg of their last-four ties in the previous two seasons, and have won just twice - while losing eight - in 12 trips to Spain for a competitive fixture.

Read more in our preview.

© gettyimages / Alexander Hassenstein

10:00 - Herzlich willkommen

Good morning and welcome to bundesliga.com's UEFA Champions League live blog! FC Bayern München's semi-final first leg against Club Atletico de Madrid may be over 24 hours away, but Pep Guardiola's troops have a busy schedule lined up on Tuesday: