City Face Uphill Task

Picture: Mike Hewitt/Getty Images
Manchester City will rely on Edin Dezko. Picture: Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Roma v Manchester City

Stadio Olimpico, Rome

Thursday December 11 –   5:45am (AEST)




Manchester City EPL Logo

Manchester City travel to Italy on Thursday (AEST) to take on Roma for a spot in the UCL Round of 16.

The Sky Blues were far from convincing on the weekend, holding on to a 1-0 win over Everton in Manchester. That win closed the gap between themselves and EPL leaders Chelsea at the top of the table, but it came at a cost. Argentine striker Sergio Aguero injured his knee and is expected to be out until 2015. It’s a massive blow for Manuel Pelligrini. Aguero hit a hat-trick against Bayern Munich a fortnight ago to keep his side’s UCL hopes alive, but it will now come down to Edin Dzeko and Stevan Jovetic to produce something special.

With a better goal difference than City and with CSKA Moscow facing Real Madrid on the final day of fixtures, destiny is well and truly in Roma’s hands. A win or a draw would just about wrap up qualification for the Italian giants, but Rudi Garcia knows he can’t let his side lay back and weather a City onslaught. Two weeks ago, Roma drew 1-1 with CSKA Moscow in a match that saw Francesco Totti score his second goal in the competition. It was the 38-year-old’s 39th UCL goal of his career, and he’ll be the man Roma look for to break down the City defence.

With Sergio Aguero ruled out, Roma enter this match as slight favourites. Manchester City will go all-out attack in the Italian capital to force qualification, and that playing style could yield plenty of goals.        




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