Mario Gomez has a chance to silence the critics today against Barcelona

Alex Grimm

After two stunning seasons in a row, Mario Gomez has struggled this year failing to repeat his machine-like scoring and becoming a somewhat forgotten man on the Bayern bench. Today he'll get a chance to prove the doubters wrong.

Mario Gomez has had a tough season for Bayern Munich. After two straight campaigns in which he netted a total of 54 goals, the dependable goal-scoring machine has sputtered and stalled his way to just 15 this season, losing his top spot at both Bayern and the German national team.

Last weekend we saw a glimpse of that old Gomez when he scored a mind blowing hat trick in six minutes as Bayern routed Hannover 6-1. Despite that glorious moment questions continue to swirl around Gomez as people ask whether or not there's a place for him in the team. Big changes are expected when Pep Guardiola takes over this summer and today's news about the impending arrival of Mario Götze from Dortmund only hammers that point home.

For the moment none of that matters and as our Bayern Munich blog Bavarian Football Works explains, Gomez will have a chance to show he still matters to Der FCB when they take the pitch against Barcelona today.

Gomez, despite being relegated to the position of bench warmer extraordinaire this season, will have the chance to show that he still has what it takes to be a starter for Bayern München against FC Barcelona. He will want to show everyone that he is highly capable of performing against the best. The equation for Gomez is simple; he has to bully Barca's defenders and score goals. He will be loved by the Munich public once again. Gomez was loved last season despite what happened at the end of last season. He can win everyone back again.

With Mario Mandzukic suspended for the first leg, it's Gomez's moment to shine and remind the Bayern faithful of his tremendous exploits in the past couple seasons. If he fails to step-up, it could mark the beginning of the end of his time with the club.

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