The Cityzens travel to the RedBull Arena to face-off against a resurgent Die Roten Bullen in the Champions League, Round of 16, 1st leg tie, on Wednesday evening.
Manchester City‘s long and elusive wait for their first Champions League trophy has reached another round of sixteen stage in the Champions League,in 2023. Pep Guordiola’s team are currently in second place in the Premier League table, but haven’t been able to find their consistent form which made them contenders in every competition like the previous years. Although, they topped their Champions League group, ahead of Dortmund in second place, while being unbeaten. They haven’t looked like the Man City of past years, dominating teams and oustcoring them.
For Leipzig, 2023 has got off to a great start as they’re unbeaten in all competitions until last week, in the league. It looked like something had clicked for Marco Rose’s men, and their exceptional home record helped their cause. Interestingly, the last win over an English opponent was that also came against Manchester City. Leipzig defeated Man City 2-1, in 2021. They have an average of 1.18 goals allowed each game, while averaging 1.72 Expected goals. (All UCL in 2022-2023), and should be encouraged to find the back of the net in this crucial knockout round 1st leg at home, besides a win.
Wednesday: 22-02-2023, 08:30 pm (GMT)
Thursday: 23-02-2023, 01:30 am: (IST)
RB Leipzig form (all competitions): W-W-D-L-W
Manchester City (all competitions): W-L-W-W-D
Players to watch out
RB Leipzig: Jasko Gvardiol
The Croatian center back has been the star performer for Leipzig this season and helped his side qualify for the latter stages of the Champions League. His good form reflected his performances in the World Cup in Qatar back in December, earning raving reviews globally. Chelsea and Liverpool are definitely interested in acquiring his services next season, as per numerous reports and will be the man to keep an eye on in the match up.
Manchester City: Erling Haaland
The Norwegian superstar has set the Premier League alight this season with his outrageous athlecism, physicality and most importantly, goal scoring form. His unbelievable start in the Premier League, while breaking and creating a few records, i.e, 26 goals and 4 assists in 23 games, to be precise, is nothing short of ridiculous. He already has five goals in this year’s Champions League, and he was bought by the club specifically, to make a difference in such crucial Champions League matches. Expect him to get on the score sheet on Wednesday evening.
Injury & Team News
For Leipzig, Olmo(Hamstring), defender Diallo(knee) and goalie Gulasci (Ligament) all have long term injuries and will miss out.
Manchester City have a relatively fit squad and have full squad travelling to Germany besides the only confirmed injury doubt of defender Stones (hamstring).
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Head to Head
RB Leipzig: 1
Manchester City: 1
RB Leipzig predicted Line-up: (4-2-3-1)
Blaswich; Henrichs, Klostermann, Gvardiol, Halstenberg; Laimer (c), Schlager; Szoboszlai, Forsberg, Werner; Silva
Manchester City predicted Line-up: (4-2-3-1)
Ederson; Walker, Dias, Akanji, Ake; Rodri, Bernardo; Mahrez, De Bruyne, Grealish; Haaland
Pep’s men are definitely entering the business end of the season and will look to finally kick start a run of good consistent form starting Wednesday night. Leipzig are a decent outfit and were unbeaten in all competitions prior to their shock loss to Union Berlin at home last week in the league. The confidence might be a bit down, and Man City should be able to get a result if they play to their plan.
Prediction: RB Leipzig 1 – 2 Manchester City
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