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Schalke v Manchester City preview: all you need to know

There are reunions aplenty when Manchester City visit Schalke – here's all you need to know.

City are looking to maintain their rich vein of form
City are looking to maintain their rich vein of form ©Getty Images
  • Guardiola: "We have many dreams in our head"
  • Manchester City have won 12 of their last 13 matches
  • Sané (2011–16), Nastasić (2012–14) face former clubs
  • Return leg takes place in Manchester on 12 March

Reporter's view (James Thorogood, UEFA.com): Schalke's last round of 16 appearance in 2015 was a thriller as they stormed back from a 2-0 first-leg loss to Real Madrid to give the champions an almighty fright at the Bernabéu, falling just short in a 5-4 aggregate defeat. Out of form and up against free-scoring City, it's hard to imagine the Royal Blues recreating the magic of the night Leroy Sané scored on his UEFA Champions League debut, but Schalke won't fear the role of underdog.

Possible line-ups

Watch sensational Sané goal for Schalke

Schalke: Fährmann; Caligiuri, S Sané, Nastasić, Oczipka; McKennie, Bentaleb, Matondo, Uth, Konoplyanka; Burgstaller
Out: Mascarell (suspended), Embolo (metatarsal), Schöpf (knee)
Doubtful: Stambouli (cheekbone)
Misses next game if booked: Embolo, Rudy, Stambouli

Man. City: Ederson; Walker, Otamendi, Laporte, Danilo; De Bruyne, Fernandinho, Bernardo; Sterling, Agüero, L Sané
Out: Mendy (knee), Bravo (Achilles), Gabriel Jesus (hamstring), Stones (groin)
Doubtful: Kompany (muscular)
Misses next game if booked: Agüero, Otamendi, Fernandinho


Key battle

Nastasić v Agüero: Sergio Agüero has been in blistering form – the Argentina striker scoring two hat-tricks in his last three games – but Schalke's three-man defence, which conceded just four goals in six group outings, presents a stiff test. "We're underdogs but I still think we have a chance," said centre-back Matija Nastasić. If the Serbian can get the better of his former team-mate, the chances of Schalke taking a positive result to Manchester will be much higher.

Where to watch

Man. City: The story so far

Fans can find their local UEFA Champions League broadcast partner(s) here.

Form guide

Last game: Schalke 0-0 Freiburg (16/02)

Man. City
Last game: Newport County 1-4 City (16/02, FA Cup last 16)

Domenico Tedesco, Schalke coach

There's nothing like a Champions League knockout match against one of the world's best. We have worked hard to be able to play in a game like this. By logic, we are in with a chance. Of course we aren't favourites, but we have made it to this round [on merit]. Manchester City have an extremely strong team and we need to be strong. We owe it to ourselves and to our fans.

City are very structured in their phases of play. Every player knows what the others are doing. They are particularly good in the 'number eight' position. Yet even if you do your job well, it can make you vulnerable in some respects. Any team can pay the price [against them].

Guardiola oversees City training on Tuesday
Guardiola oversees City training on Tuesday©AFP/Getty Images

Pep Guardiola, Man. City manager

This competition is special – the teams are good, you have to control your emotions. You have to suffer and survive the bad moments, but we are confident. We have many dreams in our head.

You can't go through if you are not yourself, if you don't do your best performance. If you want to dream, to go through to the last stages, every single second you have to be incredible: impose your game. To be ourselves, that is what I want to feel.

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