Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Prediction: Manchester City vs Monaco

Verdict: Both teams to score – yes

Best Odds: 3/4

Bookmaker: Bet365

Manchester City continue their busy schedule with a return to the elite stage of the Champions League as they prepare to host Ligue 1 hot-shots Monaco on Tuesday night.

Manchester City

Don’t let the goalless FA Cup draw at Huddersfield fool you, Manchester City are in much improved form and will be welcoming Monaco in rather high spirits following their six-match unbeaten run. Huddersfield slip was the result of Citizens already thinking about their Champions league match and they are expected to put in much-improved showings against the French side on Tuesday. Pep Guardiola has been given a tough ride in his debut season in England with the Citizens and the forthcoming clash against Monaco arrives just as the Spaniard seems to have tightened the grip on his job, which is good news for the fans. Additionally, Manchester City seems to be England’s best hope of progressing through to the quarter-finals as Arsenal have a mountain to climb against Bayern Munich, whereas the struggling Premier League champions will be given a stern test to their European ambitions against Europa League holders Sevilla. Guardiola’s men, however, are aware of the challenge they are facing as Monaco are the force to be reckoned with this season and the Citizens will need a strong home performance in order to grab a lead to carry to Stade Louis II later in March.

Team News

Aleksandar Kolarov has picked up a knock in the Huddersfield match and is expected to join captain Vincent Kompany on the sidelines for the forthcoming duel.

The hosts will also have to do without Gael Clichy, Ilkay Gundogan and Brazilian sensation Gabriel Jesus whose metatarsal fracture will keep him out of action for quite some time.

Monaco

The Principality club have arguably been one of the most exciting sides in Europe in 2016/17 season. Monaco have netted whopping 76 goals in 26 French Ligue 1 games thus far to go top of the league ahead of PSG and Nice, whereas Leonardo Jardim’s men appear to be cruising in the Champions League as well. Having topped their group ahead of Bayer Leverkusen, Tottenham and CSKA Moscow, the Frenchmen have been pitted against Manchester City on their way to the quarterfinals. Jardim’s men will be keen to land an away goal at all costs and to extend their unbeaten run to 13 matches in a row. Monaco are making the trip to England on the back of the 1-1 stalemate at Bastia which saw Jardim’s men struggle upfront, but they are expected to be much more efficient as they head out to the Etihad. The rejuvenated Radamel Falcao is expected to lead the line for the visiting side as the Colombian looks to send a message to the Premier League club. Having scored 16 goals thus far in the campaign, the Tiger is a huge contrast to a struggling striker he had been during a dismal two-season spell with Chelsea and Manchester United.

Team News

Attacking midfielder Gabriel Boschilia continues his recovery from a cruciate injury, whereas the visitors are also without Guido Carillo who is struggling with a foot problem.

Pierre-Daniel NGuinda is yet to make a bow this season as he recovers from a thigh injury, while Tiemoue Bakayoko’s knee injury keeps him out of action this time out.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Man City won 4 of the last 5 home matches
  • The Citizens failed to keep a clean sheet in 10 of last 11 matches at Etihad
  • Monaco lost only one of their last 12 matches on the road
  • Jardim’s men scored 76 goals in 26 Ligue 1 matches
  • City’s sensation Gabriel Jesus misses out due to injury

Conclusion

Manchester City are feeling motivated and ready to lock horns with high-flying French side Monaco and we should be in for a highly-contested match. City want a win to carry it over the Stade Louis II, whereas Monaco are eager to score an away goal to gain the advantage for the second leg in France.

Verdict: Both teams to score – yes

Best Odds: 3/4

Bookmaker: Bet365

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