Manchester City – Sporting Prediction and Tips for today, Match 9, 2022
Football: Champions League – Play Offs – 1/8-finals
Kick-off: 21:00 Manchester City – Sporting
Tip: Over 2.5 Goals
Match Result: 0:0 LOST
Manchester City – Sporting Match Preview
- This UEFA Champions League (UCL) round of 16 second leg is essentially a formality after Manchester City recorded the joint-biggest winning margin in a UCL first-leg away game after their 5-0 victory in Lisbon. Perhaps highlighting the high standards set by boss Pep Guardiola, he blasted his team for ‘underperforming’ in that first-leg success, although the Premier League leaders remain fighting on three fronts and they do come into this game after a big victory in the Manchester derby.
- The UCL has proven elusive for City who have never won this trophy, but they can send a message to the competition’s other teams if they heed Guardiola’s words and outperform the first leg, as a seven-goal margin of victory here would cement the greatest ever two-legged success in UCL history. However, City have fallen behind on four separate occasions across their last four home games, improving hopes of an away consolation.
- It has been a rough few weeks for Sporting Lisbon, who have been cut six points adrift in the title race, suffered a bruising defeat in the semi-final first-leg of the Taça de Portugal and now face a first-leg margin that has never been overturned in UCL history. To make history they would also have to record a first away win in England since a 3-2 success at Middlesbrough in 2004/05 (D2, L5 since).
- Barring something spectacular, this will be only the first time at the ninth attempt that an English side has knocked Sporting out of Europe during a two-legged affair. City were the latest victim to fall to Sporting, but despite a six-game unbeaten run of away games ahead of this (W4, D2), continuing that against the UCL outright favourites will be no mean feat.
- Players to watch: One of City’s Portuguese contingent, Bernardo Silva, shone in the first leg with two goals and an assist, though none of his last four goals were crucial to a result. Any hope of a Sporting consolation may rest on Paulinho’s shoulders – seven of his nine scoring appearances this season were in games that produced over 3.5 total goals.
- Hot stat: Only two sides have recorded more corners this UCL campaign than City’s average of 7.0 per match (SPO: 3.57).