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Manchester City vs. Shakhtar Donetsk: City to ‘secure knockout spot’ with game to spare

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It’s first versus second in Group C as top of the table Manchester City host Shakhtar Donetsk on Tuesday evening.

Pep Guardiola’s side go into the game in the knowledge that only a draw is needed to clinch qualification to the knockout stages. But after dropping points for the first time in the competition last time out in a 1-1 draw at Atalanta, they will undoubtedly be keen to get back to winning ways.

The home side are currently 1/6 to do just that, with the visitors 15/1 to take all three points.

A draw between the pair is currently 13/2.

City were certainly hindered by a Claudio Bravo red card against the Italian outfit, with Phil Foden also seeing red in the previous meeting with Atalanta. They, therefore, need to be careful not to overexert themselves at the Etihad on Tuesday night.

The last meeting between these sides ended in a comfortable 3-0 victory for City in Ukraine. Riyad Mahrez, Ilkay Gundogan and Gabriel Jesus got the goals that night to secure a perfect start for Guardiola’s men.

It’s 7/1 for another 3-0 City win.

The Algerian winger is currently 13/2 to score the opener on Tuesday night, with the German midfielder and Brazilian striker 12/1 and 3/1 respectively.

However, England winger Raheem Sterling has been City’s main threat in Europe this season. He has five Champions League goals to his name in the current campaign. He is currently 8/11 to make it six, and 15/4 to score the first goal of the game.

The Premier League champions may not be having it all their own way domestically, but they are certainly showing their intent in Europe. They are among the top scorers in the competition, and have conceded just two goals. Guardiola’s men boast a defensive record level with Barcelona and second only to PSG, who are yet to concede.

But the meeting with the Ukrainian side will be no walkover this time around. Shakhtar’s only loss of Group C came against City. And they will be boosted further having left Atalanta with three points, compared to City’s one.

Their recent results in Europe also imply that the home side must be on their guard from the first whistle to the very last. Shakhtar netted a 95th minute winner in Italy to win the game there. And goals in the 93rd and 98th minute helped rescue a draw at Dinamo Zagreb.

Junior Moraes has found the back of the net twice for them in the campaign. He is 13/5 to make it three. And Yevhen Konoplyanka will also be dangerous going forward. The Ukrainian international is available at 20/1 to score the first goal at the Etihad on Tuesday.

Sports Journalism graduate, Liverpool and Northern Ireland fan. Currently working as a freelance journalist for GOAL, while I am a graduate of the FISU Young Reporters Programme at the 2019 Winter Universiade in Krasnoyarsk, Russia. Can follow me on Twitter or view my linkdin biography or contact me via my email .

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