Friday, November 15, 2019

Prediction: Atalanta vs Manchester City

Verdict: Manchester City win and over 1.5 goals

Best Odds: 4/6

Bookmaker: Bet365

On the verge of securing their spot in the knockout stage of this year’s Champions League, Manchester City will make the trip to an inconsistent Atalanta on Wednesday night.

Atalanta

Starting with the hosts, while an empathic 7-1 win over Udinese last month may have improved the mood around the Gewiss Stadium, Atalanta have since come crashing back down to earth. Putting in arguably a season-worst display and suffering a shock 2-0 defeat at home against Cagliari over the weekend, Gian Piero Gasperini’s men have won just one of their last five matches across all competitions and have continued to show some glaring issues on their Champions League debut. Handed a 5-1 hammering away at the Etihad a fortnight ago, the Blue and Blacks have lost each of their opening three Group C appearances, shipping a staggering 11 goals in those three defeats. Now falling out of the top-four in Serie A, fans around the Gewiss Stadium will have some growing concerns over their sides form on home soil. Including their defeat against Cagliari on Sunday, Atalanta have won just a pair of their last six matches in front of their own supporters.

Team News

Manchester City midfielder Phil Foden is suspended for the trip to Atalanta following his red card in the 5-1 win over the Italians a fortnight ago.

Tommy Doyle and attacking midfielder Ian Poveda are including in the travelling party, but David Silva is out after suffering a muscular injury in the 2-1 Premier League win over Southampton.

Manchester City

As for the visitors, battling from behind in the most dramatic of fashion to clinch a 2-1 win over a struggling Southampton on Saturday, the defending Premier League champions have continued to shine following the international break. Head Coach Pep Guardiola finds his side enjoying a five-match winning run across all competitions and also hold a five-point buffer at the top of Group C. Despite chasing a six-point buffer to Liverpool in the race to defend their domestic crown, the mood around the Etihad remains at a high and they have continued to show their usual strengths in the final third. Already bagging 10 Champions League goals so far, one man to watch out for in midweek will be leading marksman and attacking talisman, Sergio Aguero. Once again finding the net on Saturday, the 31-year-old now has five goals in his last four matches across all formats. Also enjoying a four-match winning run on the road, Guardiola’s side should be confident of extending their buffer at the top of Group C on Wednesday.

Team News  

Atalanta striker Duvan Zapata is out with a muscle injury but Gian Piero Gasperini is expected to have an otherwise fully-fit squad.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Atalanta have lost each of their three Champions League matches in Group C, shipping 11 goals in those three defeats.
  • The Italian outfit have also won just two of their last six matches at the Gewiss Stadium.
  • When the two sides met a fortnight ago Manchester City came away with a 5-1 win.
  • Pep Guardiola’s side have won each of their three Group C matches, scoring 10 goals.
  • Sergio Aguero has scored five goals in his last four matches across all formats.

Conclusion

On the verge of securing their spot in the knockout stage, there is no doubt that Pep Guardiola’s side should be relishing a trip to Atalanta on Wednesday. With the hosts so publically struggling upon their Champions League debut and losing each of three Group C appearances, the Italian outfit have continued to show some glaring issues on home soil. With Manchester City continuing to shine while away on European duties, we’re backing another three points for the Premier League champions in midweek.

Verdict: Manchester City win and over 1.5 goals

Best Odds: 4/6

Bookmaker: Bet365

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Dunstan


Formerly of The Independent, Tom is a freelance football and boxing journalist from Essex, England. Currently working for three online publications, Tom is a graduate of the University of Falmouth and has spent the last two years writing across Australia, New Zealand and Asia. He can be followed at @IamTomDunstan

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