When and where: The Champions League Group D contest kicks-off from the Etihad at 2.45 p.m. ET. Coverage will be provided by the Fox Soccer Channel, with a live stream available via FoxSoccer2Go.
Preview: Manchester City head into their second Champions League group match knowing that anything less than a win will severely dent their chances of reaching the knockout phase of the competition for the first time.
Following their early exit last season, City looked to be heading for a positive start this time around as they lead group favorites Real Madrid going into the final four minutes at the Bernabeu. But two late goals from the Spanish champions means that the pressure is now firmly on City to take maximum points from their three home matches.
In the group phase last season, it was arguably City’s failure to beat Napoli in their first home match that cost them a place in the last 16. City’s task was tough then and they are unlikely to find it easy going this time against the German champions.
City should at least come into the contest on a high after an important comeback victory over Fulham on Saturday. After claiming the Premier League title last term, it has been a less than stellar start to the season for Roberto Mancini’s side.
There remains a feeling that the Italian was held back from securing the at least one marquee signing he craved in the summer, while he also still appears unsure over his best lineup, not to mention formation.
There won’t be much room for error against a Dortmund side eager to put right their disappointing European campaign of last season. Jurgen Klopp’s young exciting team begun with a 1-0 home victory over Ajax, a result in contrast to their league outings which have seen 16 goals scored and eight conceded in six matches.
Dortmund appear to have taken the loss of Shinji Kagawa in their stride as the highly rated Marco Reus has arrived and already found the net on four occasions. Two of those goals came on Saturday as Dortmund produced an emphatic 5-0 victory over Borussia Monchengladbach. That win came without the rested Robert Lewandowski, with the prolific Polish striker sure to be back and eager to make his mark against City.
For City, Edin Dzeko will be looking to get a start having scored off the bench against Real and in the victory over Fulham. The Bosnian also has plenty of experience against German opposition having spent four successful seasons with Wolfsburg.
Manchester City (probable)
D: Zabaleta, Kompany, Nastasic, Clichy
M: Garcia, Toure
Nasri, Aguero, Silva
D: Piszczek, Subotic, Hummels, Schmelzer
M: Gundogan, Kehl
Blaszczykowski, Gotze, Reus
Prediction: This promises to be the match of the second round of group games, featuring two teams packed with some of Europe’s most exciting talent. The pressure will be firmly on City to get the victory, while Dortmund will undoubtedly be pleased if they depart Manchester with a point. Klopp’s attacking philosophy is likely to ensure that Dortmund do much more than simply sit back on the counter, though, which could well play into City’s hands. As long as Mancini’s men can avoid the defensive lapses that have crept into their game this season, they should walk away with a narrow win.
Manchester City 2-1 Borussia Dortmund
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