Match Preview: Man City vs Schalke 04

Manchester City v West Ham United - Premier League
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 27: General view outside the stadium prior to the Premier League match between Manchester City and West Ham United at Etihad Stadium on February 27, 2019 in Manchester, United Kingdom. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Manchester City will be looking to confirm their place in the Champions League quarter-finals, as they hold a 3-2 advantage from the first leg in Gelsenkirchen.

The Citizens are in excellent form, winning their last nine matches in all competition. They have already secured one trophy this season and are on top of the Premier League, with eight games to go.

Schalke 04 on the other hand, visit Etihad off the back of a four-game losing run. They have an impossible task ahead of them and will need a miracle to secure progress in the Champions Leauge quarter-finals.

Team news

Fernandino and Nicolas Otamendi are suspended for Manchester City and will miss tonight’s game at the Etihad.

Benjamin Mendy, Kevin De Bruyne and John Stones are injury doubts while Claudio Bravo is sidelined for the long-term.

Daniel Caligiuri (ankle) and Omar Mascarel (groin) are out for Schalke, with Alessandro Schopf out for the rest of the season.

What did the managers say

Pep Guardiola insists Manchester City need to go step by step and don’t think about winning the Champions League.

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“We are teenagers in this competition. That’s how I feel. We push ourselves. Will not be happy if we don’t go through. We want it.

“I don’t feel the pressure to win it. Pressure is to do a good job, to compete better in quarter-finals and semi-finals, and to improve on past mistakes. This is a competition that punishes your mistakes a lot because of the quality of the opponents.

“This competition is not another game, it is a special game. Schalke had two shots on target and scored two goals in the first leg. We could have been 3-1 or 4-1 down coming into today.”

Schalke’s manager Domenico Tedesco accepts that his team is the underdog in the match but still believes that there is a possibility for a massive comeback.

“We are obviously massive outsiders, but we still have a small chance. We will need a special day. We are playing in the last 16 of the Champions League on merit.

“We know our league situation only too well. It is precarious, highly dangerous. And yet we want to stand tall here and get a result. For long stretches of the first leg, we did well.”

Stats

  • No team has ever failed to progress after scoring three goals in an away Champions League first leg.
  • Schalke have only won one and lost seven of their last nine Champions League matches in the knockout stages.
  • Man City boss Pep Guardiola has never lost to Schalke as a manager in seven previous clashes in all competitions, winning five and drawing two.
  • Schalke’s last three UEFA Champions League campaigns have all ended in the round of 16.
  • Manchester City have only lost one of their 10 previous home meetings with German opponents in all European competitions.

 

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