Manchester city locks horn with Atletico Madrid in the first leg of the quarter final champions league match.
Manchester city takes on Diego Simone’s Atletico Madrid at the Ethihad stadium on Tuesday night in what promises to be a crack.
Manchester city will go into the game full of confidence after their triumph over Burnley in the premier league that saw them reclaim top spot from rivals Liverpool.
Pep Guardiola’s Manchester city boast an impressive number of goals leading to the quarter final with 23 goals in the group stages and with leading scorer Riyad Mahrez rested over the weekend,Athletico Madrid will need to be solid at the back to keep out the Algerian who has been impressive this season in the champions league.
With the return to fitness of John stones he would do well to take his spot back from Nathan Ake who starred in the win over the Kevin De Bruyne who scored a wonderful goal against Burnley should start in midfield while Rodri will be up against familiar faces,the side he left to join city some three seasons ago.
Ahead of Tuesday’s meeting between Manchester city and Atletico Madrid, pep Guardiola’s have average a goal every 31 minutes while Atletico Madrid have averaged a goal every 80 minute.
Diego Simone whose side eliminated Manchester city arc rivals Manchester united in the round of 16 has admitted that his side would be up against a different beast in Manchester city whose have better players,but he stressed that the fact that there are just two games to see who reaches the Semi final of the competition.
Diego Simeone, Atlético coach spoke of the difference between both Manchester clubs in Mondays pre match conference;
“Manchester United had different characteristics than City, more direct, quicker. City are more positional, in all areas they manage things well. We’ll have to improve and be better in the good things we did two weeks ago. What I like most about City is the effort they make to win the ball back. That’s the work ethic every coach wants.”
Marcos Llorente, Atlético midfielder spoke of his sides chances against pep Guardiola’s men and then squash the opinion that they would be playing for a draw;
“No team goes out to draw. We will go out to compete and whatever the result is, it will be. It is clear that in La Liga we have a good winning streak and we have to take advantage of it. The team is eager and ambitious. It is an important game and a difficult opponent that have been having a great season.”
Josep Guardiola, Manchester City manager also spoke of Diego Simone’s tactics ;
“There is a misconception about the way [Diego Simeone] plays. It’s more offensive than people believe.
He doesn’t want to take a risk in the build-up but they are very good in the final third. Every season we arrive at this stage, I say if we arrive here in April, May fighting for titles, it’s because we have done really well. Bad results right now and you are out of the competitions.”
Bernardo Silva, Manchester City midfielder also spoke about his sides chances
“We were a great team five seasons ago but the team now is much better prepared for these moments. It’s an improvement, definitely. It comes with experience. We had our disappointments and we learned from that.”
On paper Manchester city have the better squad but if there is a team that can navigate against one of the best sides in Europe currently, it’s definitely Atletico Madrid,90 minutes will tell the full story.