07 August 2020 18:46
Storylines Manchester City: For City, a draw will be more than enough to advance, but don't expect Pep Guardiola's team to play cautiously. While they don't have Sergio Aguero due to his knee injury, City won the first leg without him as well after he was an unused substitute. City enters with its defense conceding just three times in its last six games, and the attack is also in top form with nine goals in its last two games. Both teams like to control the ball, so defensive stability in the middle will be key. Real Madrid: Gareth Bale, James Rodriguez and Mariano were not included on the squad list for this one.
Add the fact that Ramos is unavailable due to a red card in the first leg, that could doom Real Madrid. However, with Raphael Varane leading the back line, they still have a puncher's chance. No team in the world has been better than Real Madrid since play returned other than Bayern Munich. Real hasn't lost since action resumed in June, and this team is the gold standard in the Champions League. They believe they will go in and advance, but in order to do so they are going to need somebody other than Karim Benzema to make a huge impact in the final third. Keep an eye on Rodrygo and/or Vinicius Jr. in this one. This also could be Eden Hazard's coming out party for Real. He's all too familiar with City.