Celtic vs Manchester City Preview: City bid to continue unbeaten run
Photo Source: VAVEL

Celtic vs Manchester City Preview: City bid to continue unbeaten run

Manchester City travel to Celtic Park in the second round of group games in the Champions League.

Ben Strange

Manchester City play their second Champions League group match as they make the trip north of the border to face Brendan RodgersCeltic.

The blues go into the tie in hot form and firm favourites as Pep Guardiola’s men look to carry on their unbeaten run this season.

But City are expecting a difficult evening in Scotland and will have to play well if they wish to take anything from the match, which is expected to provide a scintillating atmosphere, as always on European nights at Celtic Park.

City’s opening match of this season’s competition saw them thump Borussia Monchengladbach 4-0 at the Etihad stadium as Sergio Aguero notched a hat trick, and Kelechi Iheanacho got his name on the scoresheet late on.  

Rare quality opposition for Celtic 

As for the home side, who are used to dominating the majority of their matches in the Scottish Premier League, they come into the tie having beaten Kilmarnock 6-1 at the weekend, which will give Rodgers’ side a huge lift coming into the match.

But with the Scottish side rarely coming up against opposition as ruthless as City, they will hope not to get handed a similar thrashing that was given to them in their opening Champions League match, as Barcelona put seven goals past them without reply at the Camp Nou.

Record chasing City

If City can find another victory, and make it their 11th consecutive win this season, then they will equal the record of the best start to a season which was set by Tottenham Hotspur in 1960/61.

Managers focused on tie

Blues boss Guardiola wants his side to concentrate on the task at hand and knows claiming that victory will not come easy to the Manchester club.

He said: “Wins help you to win more, but I am not concerned about this little record. The group is tough. If we are able to win against Celtic we are going to take a big step forward, but this is not easy.

Celtic boss Rodgers is also under no illusions and knows the extent of the task his side are faced with as they go toe-to-toe with Guardiola’s side.

Ahead of the match he said: “Sometimes with the top players, you simply can’t get close to them. That’s why they’re world class.

The reality is you have to fight, you have to find a way somehow.

Team news

City will be without Kevin De Bruyne and Vincent Kompany who have flown to Barcelona to seek treatment for their respective injuries, and Fabian Delph misses out with a muscle problem.  

As for the home side, goalkeeper Craig Gordan is expected to return to the starting line-up in goal as Dorus de Vries has not recovered from a chest injury sustained against Kilmarnock at the weekend.