Man City vs Real Madrid Team News: Aguero, Bale, James, Hazard, Ramos


Feeling the pressure to win Champions League, and knowing that this is his best chance, Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola is currently managing as well as he ever has.

Up until this past March, in humanity’s pre-COVID times, City had never beaten Real Madrid in any of their four previous attempts. However, a 2-1 win at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League round of 16 tie now puts the Sky Blues in a great position to advance back to the tournament’s quarterfinals.

It makes sense that for Guardiola to get the Cityzens, finally, over the UCL hump they must first go through the Kings of Europe.

City are essentially considered favorites to win the Champions League outright, or at least co-favorites with Bayern Munich.

City midfielder Rodri likes his side’s chances.

“I am really confident,” he said of the upcoming UCL tie.

“They are a great team and they can beat you, because they are Real Madrid, but we have to show them we are a better team. We showed them at their home, but we need to be ready because you never know what is going to happen. We have to be focused.”

“They are the greatest team in La Liga and they have shown that this year. We need to do our best to get to the next round.”

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There is a ton of team news to cover in this one, so let’s not spend any more time and just jump right in. Gareth Bale and James Rodriguez have both been left out of the Real Madrid squad amid heavy transfer rumors linking the pair with a move away from the club. Where Bale goes is a question of who can actually afford him while James has been linked with several places, including David Beckham’s expansion MLS franchise.

Also out is striker Mariano Diaz, who tested positive for coronavirus last week and has been self-isolating in quarantine ever since.

eden hazard

Former Chelsea man Eden Hazard has endured an injury-riddled nightmarish season, but he’s in the squad here. Having recovered from a fractured ankle, he is in full training now, and despite missing the last La Liga contest on July 19 could play a big part here.

Team Captain Sergio Ramos will be present at the Etihad, but he’s ineligible due to suspension.

On the flip side, Benjamin Mendy is also suspended, and Sergio Aguero just won’t be fit in time. There is hope that the striker supremo will be ready for the quarterfinals, provided City get through.

sergio ramos

UCL Round of 16 Leg 2 of 2 Manchester City vs Real Madrid FYIs

Kickoff: Friday Aug 7, 8pm Etihad stadium

Aggregate: City leads 2-1 from the first leg

Watch: CBS Sports, FuboTv

Starting XI Predictions for both sides: go to this link

Odds: Real Madrid win +320  Draw +340 Manchester City win -139

real madrid uefa champions league

Prediction: Manchester City 2, Real Madrid 0

While City will be without their all-time leading scorer, Madrid’s absentee list is longer and much more damaging to their cause. Los Blancos also have to fight uphill and away from home, thus a victory by the visiting side here would be surprising to say the least.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports, which is partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly contributes to WGN TVSports IllustratedChicago Now and SB Nation.

You can follow Banks, a former writer for Chicago Tribune.comon Twitter and his cat on Instagram.

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