Red Bull Munich and Yunost Minsk have previous experiecne against each other, which may come in useful ahead of their Round of 16 ties this season. The sides met in last season's Group Stage, where Munich won both games.
Last season’s Runners-Up had a relatively straightforward passage through to the Round of 16, losing only one game en route to the Playoffs. They topped their group ahead of Fárjestad by a point to ensure making the knock-out stages of the Champions Hockey League for the fifth straight season. The Red Bulls had a great start as they won both opening games without conceding a goal; despite losing in Bystrica in a shootout, a win by the same fashion in Ambrì-Piotta was what effectively saw them through.
Goals have very much been shared around with the team, with five players having two each and no less than nine different scorers over the Group Stage. That said, Munich were the lowest-scoring team to qualify. Saving over 97% of the shots he’s faced, Dany aus den Birken is once again one of the hottest goalies in the competition – and only nine goals against in the entire Group Stage makes the Red Bulls’ defence the joint-stingiest of qualified teams.
"Minsk aren't an unknown team for us, but we know we'll have to give everything in the away leg to bring something home."
Patrick Hager (Captain, Red Bull Munich)
Yunost Minsk have been consistently a top team in the Belarusian Extraliga, earning multiple trips to the CHL and this year they made history by becoming the first Belarusian team to reach the Round of 16. They’ve been close before, participating in the Round of 32 and always being difficult to beat on home ice. This year, they finally earned a road win, 4-2 in Lahti on Gameday 5. The subsequent shootout loss at home against the Pelicans meant that they needed Třinec to lose in regulation time in Lausanne, which they did. For Minsk to go further, they’re going to need goaltender Igor Brukin to keep up the level of play he established in the Group Stage. He was especially solid the win in Lahti and kept the team in every game he started.
"We will show our determination and strong character. We hope to give a pleasant surprise to our fans!"
Alexei Torbin (Sport Manager, Yunost Minsk)