Chelsea midfielder Mateo Kovacic says that Bayern Munich will be better rested than the Blues heading into their Champions League encounter due to the Premier League being ‘tougher’ than the Bundesliga.
Bayern travel to Stamford Bridge on Tuesday night in their round of 16 first leg sitting top of the German top-flight, a league which Kovacic considers less physically demanding than its English equivalent.
The 25-year-old has admiration for Chelsea's upcoming opponents but added that the Germans will be better prepared for the meeting.
“They have a great team, and they are playing well,” Kovacic said in a pre-match press conference.
“Their league is not as tough as the Premier League, so for sure they will be more rested than us. We will prepare to hurt them a lot.”
The Croatian has already achieved success in the competition with Real Madrid and was part of the side that beat Bayern in the semi-finals of the 2017/18 campaign, with the Spanish outfit going on to beat Liverpool in the final.
“I had the luck of playing for a great club like Real Madrid,” added Kovacic. “I won the Champions League and I am happy about that.
“But as players, we don’t think about winning it because every week is a big game for us, so it doesn’t change too much.
“There is always another great game that we try to win. We are trying to do great things this year and tomorrow we want to show that we are a great team and pass this stage if possible.”
Chelsea head into the match sitting fourth in the Premier League, with their opposition sitting top of the Bundesliga. Bayern are also the leading scorers in this season’s Champions League with 24 goals, but Kovacic believes there is not much difference between the two sides.
“I think we are similar teams, there is not much difference,” he added. “We can be a big team, we have shown that this season in big games.
“We don’t have so much experience, but we know how to play big games. We’ll show that tomorrow.
“Bayern has a squad full of great players. That’s normal at this stage of the Champions League, you always play against big players. It will be tough, but we like these big games.”