Manchester United
United's players paid their respects at the site of the Munich air disaster. [Twitter/ManUtd]

Upon declaring their intention to fly a plane above Old Trafford calling for the sacking of David Moyes, Manchester United fans claimed the manager had betrayed the club's tradition by labelling his beleaguered squad with the tag as underdogs.

But prior to the biggest game of Moyes' 10 months in charge of United against Bundesliga and European champions Bayern Munich managed by two-time European Cup winner Pep Guardiola, the Scot and his team can't be accused of lacking sentiment nor dismissing the club's rich history.

On Tuesday, United's players and staff visited the memorial at the site of the 1958 Munich air disaster to pay their respects to those affected by the crash 56 years ago. A move might not only work to inspire United's squad, but puts into perspective the Premier League champions' current demise.

Though United entered the two-legged tie against the tournament favourites and holders, a competitive showing in the first leg has raised expectation of a potential surprise at the Allianz Arena.

The loss of Bastian Schweinsteiger and Javi Martinez due to suspension, the absence of Thiago Alcantara among others through injury gives United hope they can repeat the success of Arsenal and Manchester City in 2013 and win in Munich.

Pep Guardiola has notably been frustrated by English club's resilience and solidity at the back, and United's recent defensive record suggests they possess the formula to topple Bayern and replicate the performance of their Premier League colleagues.

United have achieved five successive clean sheets in the Premier League and last conceded on the road in the harrowing Champions League defeat to Olympiakos in February. Bayern might have won the German title in record time but having previously been accused of allowing standards to slip, suffered a first league defeat of the campaign to Augsberg at the weekend.

It is expected United will adopt a similarly defensive guise with Antonio Valencia, Danny Welbeck and Wayne Rooney entrusted with finding the goals required to reach the semi-final. In the returning Rooney Moyes possesses a striker on the verge of jumping into the top 20 Champions League goal-scorers of all time and is the greatest threat to Bayern's crown.

Naturally, with United seeking an unlikely and sensational showing to down Guardiola's men, attention turns to their fateful comeback against Bayern in 1999. Instead, Moyes' team need rewind further and replicate the bravery, courage and commitment of the days of Sir Matt Busby, not least from that tragic day in Munich.