- Etihad Stadium
- BT Sport 2
- Atletico Madrid have won each of their last six games
- Atletico won 1-0 at Old Trafford in the last round, their third win in four European trips
- Diego Simeone knocked out Bayern Munich in Guardiola’s final season in Germany
- Atletico Madrid have won each of their last four away games
City enter vital fortnight
Man City’s treble hopes will be tested over the next two weeks, as they face double headers against Atletico Madrid and Liverpool. The Citizens are going head to head with the Reds for domestic glory, while they have a massive test in the last eight of the Champions League.
English champions City meet Spanish champions Atletico for the first time this week, but the two managers are familiar with one another. Diego Simeone’s Atletico dumped out Pep Guardiola’s Bayern Munich in 2015/16 and they could give this City side a scare.
Atleti on form
At one point this term, it looked like Simeone’s side would face a struggle to return to the Champions League next term. However, their form has turned around and suddenly they look like the biggest challengers to runaway leaders Real Madrid.
Atletico have won each of their last six games, a run which includes a victory in Manchester. The Spanish champions put out Man United in the last 16, with their win at Old Trafford their third victory in four away trips this term. Having won at both Porto and AC Milan in a tricky group, City should be worried about this one.
Will Pep tinker?
As City’s European misses stacked up over the years, it seems like Guardiola has become more and more willing to switch his side up in big games. He held off until the final to do it last season, but each of the last three seasons has seen Guardiola make big changes to City’s approach before European exits.
Given how Simeone sets his side up for these games, it’s easy to see Guardiola making another sweeping change. With two huge clashes against Liverpool on the horizon too City may look to change things up, which would play into the hands of the in-form visitors.
Visitors the value play
Atletico have proven themselves away from home in Europe this term, while we know City have a European slip in them. The visitors also have attacking options who can trouble a defence which will massively miss Ruben Dias this week. Joao Felix has scored seven goals in eight games for his club, so I can see him striking against the hosts’ weakened backline.
Given the form of Atletico, I can’t see why City have been priced in to 1/3 for this one. The visitors can at least come here and grind out a draw, so take the value on them in the double chance market. Meanwhile, Atletico’s four game winning streak on the road has me going with a 2-1 away win as my correct score prediction.
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