Both clubs will be looking to pick up their first points of this seasons Champions League campaign after suffering defeats in the opening game.
The sides have had contrasting starts to their league campaigns. Gladbach started the season with 6 consecutive defeats but have found their feet after back to back wins in the Bundesliga, scoring 7 goals in the process. City got off to a flyer winning 5 out of 5 but have suffered a dip in form after consecutive Premier League defeats.
If City are to beat a Gladbach side full of confidence, they will have history to contend with as no English club has ever beaten Gladbach in their own stadium (D1 L4). In fact, Gladbach have won their last four home games against English teams in European competition.
Gladbach will be without Captain Martin Stranzl as he is still on the sidelines with a fractured eye socket, while fellow defender Tony Jantschke is a doubt because of a thigh injury.
Pellegrini has a number of injury concerns heading into the game. Mangala (groin), Clichy (Ankle), Delph (hamstring) and Bony (Knock) will remain on the sidelines, whilst Kompany (calf) will be doubtful. City’s David Silva and Joe Hart are expected to return, Yaya Toure is also fit after his early withdrawal against Spurs.
Unsurprisingly these sides have not met many times in the past, with Gladbach making their first appearance in the competition since it was renamed in 1992, and City not hitting the heights of the Champions League until 2011.
The only previous meetings came in the formerly named UEFA Cup in 1979. The first leg of the tie ended 1-1 with Gladbach winning the return leg 3-1 to progress into the semi-final of the competition, and go on to win the competition that season.
Graint Xhaka was one of the reasons that Gladbach were able to bring Champions League football back to Borussia Park this season. The Swiss internationals determination and swashbuckling style enable him to dictate the game from the centre of the park.
The performance of Sergio Aguero will be crucial is the outcome of this game for City. The Argentine continues to face the pressure of City’s goal scoring burden as other strikers fail to deliver. With 15 goals in the Champions League, Aguero is 9 goals clear of second-placed Yaya Toure, with none of his team mates able to display similar quality in front of goal.
- Manchester City have lost three of their four trips to Germany in the Champions League, and 7 of their last 11 Champions League games.
- Gladbach have scored in each of their last 15 European games and have never lost to English opposition in their own stadium.
- No English club has ever beaten Gladbach in the German team’s own stadium. They have won their last four home games against English teams in European competition.
This is a must win game for City if they want to qualify for the knockout stages, a defeat would leave them with an uphill task to make the last 16.
The bookmakers make Man City favourites to win, but after a dip in form and a dismal European record I am backing the Germans to win and ensure that City will face a tough task to qualify for the knockout stages.
Match prediction: 2-1 Manchester City