bayern munich are attempting to reach their first Champions League final since 2013 when they take on Real Madrid at the Allianz Arena this evening.

ESPN reported that the Bavarians will be hoping for a strong performance at home in the first leg in order for the club to better their recent record of three semi-final losses in the last four seasons.

To do so, however, they must best over two legs, the defending champions from Spain, no easy feat considering their recent Champions League pedigree - they have played in and won three of those last four finals.

These two sides met in last years competition also, a quarter-final tie in which the Spanish club emerged with a 6-3 aggregate victory. The winner over the two legs will meet either Liverpool or Roma in the final in Kiev, with the English side in pole position after their 5-2 first leg victory on Tuesday.

Can Heynckes help break Bayern's semi-final hoodoo?

In May 2013, Bayern Munich lifted the Champions League trophy after a 2-1 win over their German rivals Borussia Dortmund, breaking their run of two finals in the three years prior which they had lost.

Jupp Heynckes was in charge of what was supposed to be his final Champions League match that night, 'bowing out' on a high.

Die Roten haven't had much fortune in the Champions League since, but now that their legendary manager has returned, the optimism of conquering Europe once again is hitting a fever-pitch in Munich.

Heynckes, who has the unique distinction of having won the Champions League as a manager with both Bayern and Real, does not necessarily have the best of chances this time around.

His Bayern squad is still very strong and they have already easily won the Bundesliga with only 15 points dropped all season - but it's not the force it once was.

The influence of Robben and Ribéry is fading with age, meaning that their fast, stretching attacking prowess is not as potent as it once was, even if the evergreen Robert Lewandowski still can't stop scoring.

That being said, they still have world-class talent at their disposal and will represent a tough opponent for both Real Madrid and anyone they may come up against in the final, should they get there, of course.

Zidane needs his team's performance to be the Real deal

The competition that has been so kind to Los Blancos in recent years may once again provide salvation for their under-pressure manager.

Zidane won the Champions League in each of his first two seasons at the Bernabéu as well as a La Liga title, and while this has been enough for the Frenchman to keep his job so far, a failure in Europe this time around could see him receive his P45 from trigger-happy president Florentino Pérez.

EWN report that Real sit 15 points behind Barcelona in the table and will almost certainly finish a long way-off their Catalan rivals in the league, which will cause embarrassment for Los Merengues, and if there is one thing that Pérez will not stand for, its embarrassment.

Failure to win the Champions League will see Zidane's position as manager under scrutiny and failure to even get to the final will almost certainly see the Frenchman axed.

This two-legged encounter with the German champions could be Zidane's most important 180 minutes as Real Madrid manager to date.