Borussia Monchengladbach v Manchester City – Wednesday 24 February, 8pm KO

Now doesn’t seem the time to take on Manchester City. They have won their last 18 games in all competitions and will be confident of making it 19 in this Champions League match. Their opponents are in nothing like the form of their opponents and even worse have lost their home advantage.

Instead of being played on their home ground, Monchengladbach are playing this game in Istanbul, Hungary. Not that their home form is anything to scare Manchester City as the Germans only won one of their three home group games. Only three of their last ten away Champions League matches have been won.

Monchengladbach have actually only beaten one team in this season’s Champions League. They had comprehensive home and away wins over Shakhtar Donetsk, scoring ten goals without reply. However, their four matches against Real Madrid and Inter Milan, only produced two points.

It could have been more, but they conceded late goals against those sides, including being 2-0 up at home to Real Madrid going into the 87th minute and somehow drawing 2-2. The Germans conceded at least twice in each of their games against Real and Inter. That must be music to the ears of high scoring Manchester City.

Form in the Bundesliga has dipped in recent weeks. They have only two points from their last four games. Saturday saw them concede another late goal and end up losing 2-1 at home to Mainz. Their opponents were one from bottom in the table and the loss sent Monchengladbach down to eighth place.

They are nine points behind the final Champions League qualification place, so they may well not be in this competition next season. The odds on them beating City in this first leg are 9/1 at William Hill

There was a time earlier in this season when it looked as if Manchester City might not have the best of seasons. Their first eight league games of the new season only produced 12 points. Most of that time was spent in the bottom half of the table as they’d played a game less. That was because of their summer Champions League games, more of which soon.

City have made up for that poor start with almost unthinkable form. The 17 Premier League games that have followed have produced 15 wins and two draws. Only four goals have been conceded in those 17 games, one a penalty and another a Dias own goal. City have kept clean sheets in their last five Champions League games. A win to nil has odds of 5/4 at Bet365.

They have made it through to the quarter finals of the FA Cup and the Carabao Cup final. Again, the talk is of winning four trophies, unthinkable back in the second half of November. In all competitions, City have gone unbeaten in 25 games with one loss in 35. They are heavily odds on to win this match, 2/7 is on offer at Bet365.

All of this has been achieved mainly without the services of Kevin De Bruyne and Sergio Aguero. They have so many matchwinners in their squad, it’s no wonder they aren’t looking at signing Lionel Messi (well that’s what they say). The number of goal scorers for them this season is already in double figures. Ferran Torres has scored in four of City’s six Champions League games this season. He’s 5/4 at Bet365 to score In this match.

A big target for the club and its owners is winning the Champions League. Last summer saw them knock out Real Madrid at this stage. Expectations of at least a place in the final were high, then they lost to Lyon.

City played Monchengladbach in this competition in 2016. They won their home group game 4-0 thanks to an Aguero hat-trick. The reverse fixture ended in a 1-1 draw, but City left some key players out.

There seems no stopping City at the moment. Up against an out-of-form Monchengladbach, they can return from Hungary with an away win, leading at both half and full time. Paddy Power will give you odds of 10/11 on that happening.

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