Schalke v Man City Champions League betting preview and tips
Pep Guardiola won’t say it publicly but Manchester City couldn’t have asked for a better Champions League last sixteen tie, with the English champions facing a German side that sit thirteenth in the Bundesliga at the time of writing.
Schalke managed to finish second in the German league last season, although it’s been tougher going this time around, with the team managing to win just five of their seventeen encounters and it’s a tall order to see them getting a positive result against a City side who are market favourites to triumph.
Domenico Tedesco’s side finished second in their qualifying group behind Porto although they didn’t have a lot to beat, with Galatasaray and Lokomotiv Moscow not offering much in the way of resistance.
Virtually all of Schalke’s European matches have been low-scoring affairs so far, with the German side keeping it tight thus far although it’s hard to see how such a tactic will prosper against a Manchester City team who are hoping this will finally be their year in Europe.
Guardiola was unable to steer Bayern to a European success in the space of three years, although signs are better at the Etihad Stadium despite a quiet fanbase which means they don’t create a cauldron atmosphere you find at other grounds.
This could be a mismatch on the pitch though, with Kevin de Bruyne now back from injury and relishing a return to Germany, while Leroy Sane will line up against his former club for the first time since departing for Manchester.
The City squad is packed with talent, with Raheem Sterling likely to operate on the opposite flank to Sane, while Sergio Aguero remains the goal-getter than any European team would want in their side.
We’re happy to get with City to win this clash and perhaps they will win by a sizeable margin considering that they will want to get the job done in the first leg and won’t simply be happy to win the clash by the odd goal.
There is the small matter of a Premier League title to scrap it out for and we’re going to back the Citizens on the Asian Handicap giving up a -1.5 goal start.
Man City -1.5 @ 2.07 with bet365