Manchester City – Schalke
Betting suggestion: Manchester City to win with clean sheet @1,934 Pinnacle
Short preview: Schalke was in a superb position in the 68th minute in Gelsenkirchen, when they had 2-1 lead and player more on the pitch, but let’s be honest – except those two penalties, they didn’t create anything! They weren’t dangerous, they had plenty of missed passes, all together they had 7 shots, and approx. 30% of ball possession. That sounds even worse, thinking that they had a player advantage for more than 20 last minutes. City saved themselves with superb free-kick of Sane, and the late goal of Sterling but they were far from brilliant in this match. A player, who Guardiola keeps repeating is irreplaceable at the moment – veteran Fernandinho, played a very average match, making some bad decisions and therefore I don’t count his absence today (suspension) as a too big deficit. With Ilkay in the role, I think that City has a very smart holding midfielder and I believe that the ball circulation will be very fast. Schalke needs to score 2 goals on Etihad, which regarding past results of City seems like a mission impossible. I think that they won’t open up completely, because in this case, they will probably get 4-5 goals in their net. I expect City to control the match, enjoying a huge possession advantage and as Schalke will probably move a bit higher in late stages of the match, goals from City to close the match. City impressed lately with how organized they play, letting only 1 shot to West Ham, 0 shots to Bournemouth away, and 1 to Watford in last 3 matches, which is completely different than last results of Schalke, who lost against 3-0 with Mainz, 0-4 with Fortuna and 4-2 with Werder Bremen. Regardless of missing players of City, I expect a very mature performance from Guardiola’s team for who everyone is forgetting that is very demanding in defensive. With what happened last week to PSG and Real Madrid, I expect very serious Citizens tonight.