Manchester City is running away with the Premier League title and should give Basel a tough time in the round of 16.

By 90Min
February 12, 2018

FC Basel host Manchester City at their home ground, St. Jakob Park, on Tuesday night for the first leg of the Champions League Round of 16.

This is the third time Basel have made the last 16 of the competition, having qualified for the group stage eight times since 1992. Basel currently sit second in the Swiss Super League.

The Premier League leaders Manchester City come into this match with one eye on the Champions League trophy with their hopes of winning the quadruple still alive - the league, FA Cup, Carabao Cup and Champions League. 

The traveling side won their last match against Leicester on Saturday with an emphatic 5-1 victory. 

Here is everything you need to know ahead of the clash at St Jakob Park. 


Previous Encounter

This will be Man City's first meeting with FC Basel in any UEFA competitions; the English side is yet to face a Swiss club either. 

Whereas this match with Man City for Basel will be their 29th time meeting an English club in European competitions. Their home record currently stands at 6 wins, 2 draws and 5 losses from 13. 

Basel has had some success with English clubs too, mainly at home. During the group stage stages of this years competition, they deservedly won 1-0 against Manchester City rivals, Manchester United. Back in 2013 and 2014, they beat Chelsea and Liverpool respectively with the same scoreline but lost 1-4 to Arsenal in 2016.


Key Battle

Marek Suchy vs Sergio Aguero

With no Gabriel Jesus or Leroy Sane, both still out injured, leading the line will be no other than Sergio Aguero.

Aguero scored four fantastic goals on the weekend against Leicester and remains in the race for the Premier League Golden Boot; he will be looking to recreate the same form against Swiss opponents Basel.  

Having never faced each other, defender Marek Suchy will have done his homework on the Argentinian striker and will be trying to stop him from grabbing his team an away goal. 

Suchy has played in six Champions League matches this season and will be fully aware of the danger that Aguero possesses. 


Team News

The travelling side are still without striker Gabriel Jesus for this fixture, but before the Leicester game, Pep Guardiola reported he should be back in two weeks and could easily play a part in the second leg of this fixture in March. 

Leroy Sane was injured in the 2-0 victory against Cardiff City at the end of January and it was initially feared he could be out for over seven weeks. Yet, Guardiola stated he is is running a little and could be ready ahead of schedule.

David Silva has been missing for Manchester City after facing complications with the birth of his son, but it is reported he has also picked up a knock. Benjamin Mendy and Fabian Delph are still out. 

The home side has no new fresh injury concerns. 


Potential FC Basel Starting Lineup: Vaclik; Lang, Suchy, Balanta, Petretta; Stocker, Serey Die, Xhaka, Elyounoussi; Oberlin; Van Wolfswinkel

Potential Manchester City Starting Lineup: Ederson; Walker, Otamendi, Laporte, Danilo; Fernandihno; Gundogen, De Bruyne, B Silva, Sterling; Aguero


Prediction

FC Basel have caused trouble to previous English teams visiting their home ground in the past, but this City team could prove too hot to handle. 

City boast the best win ration in away games from clubs in the European elite. It stands at 80%, a huge 16 wins from 20 in all competitions. 

With City free-scoring as they are now, Basel's defense needs to be strong otherwise this tie could be wrapped up before the second leg. 

Prediction: FC Basel 1-3 Manchester City

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