Manchester City will face Schalke 04 at Etihad Stadium, in Manchester, in the Champions League 1/8-Finals second leg. Manchester City against Schalke 04 is always the match with big interest, especially during this season and first very tough game. Review our thoughts on this match here below.
Manchester City has a big advantage before the start of the second leg of Champions League since they won the first match with 3:2 result at Veltins Arena in Gelsenkirchen. In total City looks brilliant this season and lost only 2 matches at home against Crystal Palace and Lyon. However, won all other games at Etihad Stadium without any draws. In Premier League they are fighting with Liverpool for the top of the mountain and very likely that they will save that position, due to bad Liverpool form in last games. Manchester won all 5 last matches in PL and lost only once in last 15 matches.
On average in Champions League they are scoring 2.7 goals per game, passing with 89.7% accuracy and shooting 18.9 times per game. They already collected 10 yellow and 1 red card. David Silva is playing the leading position in City while in Champions League. Aguero, Sane, Jesus and Silva all have scored 3 goals each. In addition, Riyad Mahrez made 4 assists. Claudio Bravo, Aymeric Laporte, and Fernandinho will miss the next match due to injuries.
Manchester City is great this season at finishing scoring chances, attacking down the wings, creating long shot opportunities and defending set pieces. However, they are showing weaknesses at aerial duels, avoiding offside and protecting the lead. Very likely that at home ground they will play possessional football, pass shortly and attack down the wings.
Schalke has bad luck lately, however, they have played strongly against Manchester City in the first round of Champions League. In Bundesliga, they stand at 14th place and have big troubles, even with chances to be relegated to lower division. In last 5 matches, Schalke lost 4 and once played a draw. Moreover, they scored 3 and conceded 13 goals. After first lost against Manchester, now they need back up and play attacking football, however, we know how great City can play on counter attacks and how strong they are at finishing scoring chances so Schalke should prepare 200% before this game.
In CL only Nabil Bentaleb scored 3 goals and looks like the leader in an attack, as in the middle. The team on average is scoring 1.1 goals per match, passing with 77% accuracy and controlling the game with 48.5% possession. They already collected 15 yellow cards. This season they are strong at creating long shot opportunities and protecting the lead. However, they are showing weaknesses at defending against through ball attacks, attacks down the wings and avoid fouling in dangerous areas. Very likely that Schalke will play aggressively and take long shots.
These teams have met 2 times before. The first time was in the year 2008 in the Europa League group stage, then City was stronger and won 2:0. The first round of Champions League 1/8 Finals finished 3:2 with Manchester City win, however, they made a comeback, as they were in chasers position almost until the end of the match and scored goals on 85th and 90th minutes.