Manchester City is gearing up for an exciting match at Etihad Stadium, hosting FK Crvena Zvezda in the first round of the Champions League.
Manchester City boasts an impressive track record in the Champions League, having participated continuously for 13 years. Last season was particularly remarkable, with eight victories and five draws in their last 13 Champions League matches, culminating in them clinching the championship.
On the other hand, Crvena Zvezda, also known as Red Star Belgrade, has never crossed paths with the reigning European champions in the history of the European Cup/Champions League.
However, they faced formidable opponents in their previous two Champions League campaigns, going up against the eventual tournament winners, Liverpool in 2018/19 and Bayern Munich in 2019/20.
Erling Haaland is responsible for 29.4% of all shots on target for Manchester City
The betting tip is...
Haaland to score a goal
The Sky Blues are currently leading the Premier League, sitting comfortably in first place. They've achieved this impressive position by notching victories in every game and outscoring their opponents by a considerable margin.
However, Manchester City will be facing some challenges in their upcoming match. Notably, they will be missing Zack Steffen and Kevin De Bruyne due to hamstring injuries, and the availability of Jack Grealish and John Stones is uncertain.
In stark contrast, their offensive prowess has been on full display, netting a remarkable total of 11 goals during the same timeframe. This balanced performance bodes well for their prospects in the upcoming game.
Nathan Aké is expected to start for Manchester City.
Predicted Lineup: Manuel Akanji, Nathan Aké, Bernardo SilvaRodri, Ederson, Jérémy Doku, Erling Haaland, Kyle Walker, Ruben Dias, Phil Foden, Julián Alvarez.
Crvena Zvezda, a relatively newer participant in this prestigious league, has faced a persistent challenge – they've never managed to progress beyond the group stage.
Nevertheless, the team currently occupies the second position in the Serbian league. good news for them is that there are no players on their roster reported as injured or suspended.
Additionally, their recent form has been quite solid, with just two losses in their last five games.
Aleksandar Katai is doubtful to start for Fk Crvena Zvezda.
Predicted Lineup: S.Mitrovic, V.Lucic, P.Olayinka, O.Glazer, S.Mijailović, A.Dragović, M.Rodić, O.Bukari, J.krasso, M.Stameric, K.Kangwa.
Manchester City is currently riding a wave of exceptional form, reaching new heights in recent weeks. With an impressive average possession rate of 66.33%, City is expected to exert control and authority over the game.
One of the key reasons for City's formidable attacking strength is Erling Haaland, a potent force capable of dismantling any opponent. Haaland has showcased his prowess making an offensive contribution of 7 (goals + assists), making him the most significant threat that FK Crvena Zvezda will have to contend with.
On the flip side, FK Crvena Zvezda has the potential to be a formidable force, especially on their best days. Jean-Philippe Krasso, who has contributed significantly with 7 goals and assists combined, poses a noteworthy challenge for City's defense.