Depleted Man City in must-win crunch clash with Bayern Munich
Champions League second-favourites Bayern Munich (10/3) go into this match on the back of beating Manchester City in two of their last three meetings, including once on the road, and are 11/10 favourites with Coral for victory again.
The two clubs are top and bottom in Group E respectively, but Bayern have already qualified as winners after claiming maximum points from their first four games. The Sky Blues, meanwhile, desperately need a win here at the Etihad, after taking just two draws so far this campaign in the competition, and are tempting 9/4 chances to do so.
City last beat Bayern here back in 2011/12, when the score was 2-0. They are 22/1 for that outcome again.
Manuel Pellegrini will be hoping that Sergio Aguero will be fit to play, after smashing in 14 goals in all competitions so far, but the Argentine attacker missed training ahead of the crunch clash. He should be used in some capacity, though, and is evens to net anytime, and 4/1 to score last.
Stevan Jovetic, who started alongside Aguero in City’s most recent Premier League fixture (a 2-1 win over Swansea City), is also a doubt. Edin Dzeko, David Silva and Aleksandar Kolarov, meanwhile, definitely miss out, and Yaya Toure and Fernandinho are suspended.
But Jovetic was positive of his side’s chances ahead of the fixture following the win against the Swans, saying: “We can talk outside the pitch about how we need to get better. But in the end you need to show you are the best team, like we are, and in this game we played much better.
“Now we have a big chance against Bayern Munich. If we win that game, and hopefully the other results are good for us, we have faith we can turn it back around.”
Bayern are fine form of late, and top the Bundesliga already by seven points after just 12 games, and are unbeaten all season. They won the last encounter at the Etihad 3-1, and are 14/1 to repeat that result in their favour again.
Attacking trio Franck Ribery, Thomas Muller and Arjen Robben were all on the scoresheet that day, and can be backed at 2/1, 6/5 and 5/4 to net anytime here again. New acquisition, Robert Lewandowski, meanwhile, is also a 6/5 chance.
With Bayern already winners of their group, that also includes CSKA Moscow and Roma (both on four points), Pep Guardiola could field a weakened team, but Pellegrini dispelled those claims.
“No, Bayern never take it easy,” Pellegrini said. “Big teams never take one game easier. They must always fulfil their obligation to win and we are going to see a very good Bayern.”