Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper Keylor Navas currently remains a doubt to feature in the upcoming 2020 UEFA Champions League Final against FC Bayern Munich. However, it is looking more and more likely that he will get the nod to start. According to Le Parisien, Navas recently returned to training with the team after missing the Champions League semifinal due to a hamstring injury, which is good news as he aims to be fully fit for the final.
Bayern Munich probably hopes that Navas will not be available for the final because he has been the team’s biggest kryptonite in recent years. Navas faced Bayern in back-to-back years over the Champions League knockout stage while he was with Real Madrid. The ties in 2017 and 2018 were marred by a multitude of controversial referee decisions. But Navas’ strong performances against Bayern in both ties were a key reason as to why Real Madrid pulled off the wins.
In the 2016-2017 Champions League quarterfinal tie against Bayern, Navas was not the star of the show but he did just enough to keep Real Madrid in the tie. Navas allowed three goals over the tie with just one of them coming from a Bayern open play score, which came on an Arturo Vidal goal in the first leg. Bayern logged 33 total shots over the tie but only five of them were on target. Overall, Navas did his job when he was called into action against Bayern’s high-octane attack.
A year later, Bayern provided for a more clinical showing than its 2017 performance against Real Madrid. However, Bayern did not advance because of Navas’ memorable showing.
In the first leg, Navas completed four saves with three of them coming from inside the box. But the second leg is where he etched his name in Champions League history.
8 – Keylor Navas made eight saves against Bayern Munich, his highest tally in a Champions League knock-out game. Hero. pic.twitter.com/9wpwW0Qpb6
— OptaJose (@OptaJose) May 1, 2018
Navas’ eight-save performance against Bayern was an incredible feat considering that seven of his stops came from inside the box. His showing frustrated Bayern over the game.
Now, Navas is set to meet Bayern in the trilogy on Aug. 23 when they will face off in the Champions League final. Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Muller are coming into the game in top form, but neither has scored an open play Champions League goal against the Costa Rican goalkeeper.
Navas’ experience and recent winning success against Bayern can be just the x-factor needed to lead PSG to a win in the final.
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