Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City face off in a clash of contrasting styles in the next round of the Champions League.
Both sides possess world-class attacking quality with the French side boasting the likes of Neymar, Kylian Mbappe and Angel Di Maria. Pep Guardiola’s side will be hoping to end their search for European glory and send off Sergio Aguero in a strong fashion.
Clash of Contrasting Styles
Attack versus Attack
Despite having an exciting quality and flair attack, both teams are susceptible in defence and City should bench John Stones for this fixture. Pep Guardiola stated all season the best players play. However, despite Stones breakout season, he has regressed over the last few weeks. He’s on a three-game suspension for a red card he picked up against Aston Villa for a dirty tackle. Firstly he was responsible for the Aston Villa goal, secondly did not read the long ball well resulting in goals for Borussia Dortmund and Leeds United. Those types of mistakes will result in losses. In particular, against a team with the offensive firepower of PSG. Ruben Dias needs to be defending Mbappe and Aymeric Laporte defending Neymar.
Kevin De Bruyne should be available to face PSG after suffering an injury against Chelsea in the FA Cup. If Manchester City’s midfielders can control the game they have a great chance at winning. Phil Foden has been instrumental in stepping up in the void left by David Silva scoring in both legs against Dortmund including the late winner in the first leg. An issue for Manchester City is they have not played a team that has the ability to outscore them as this PSG does.
Also, in games, Manchester City has gone down multiple goals they have lost. The flaw of playing a false nine is it’s difficult to come back from a multiple-goal deficit. Guardiola just needs to keep using his best team. Don’t be intimidated by the occasion. The other flaw is Ederson has been mainly responsible for previous Manchester City’s Champions League exits. His play has to improve.
Both Sides Eye European Glory
Mbappe has been the best footballer in the knockout stage of the Champions League. In particular, his hat trick at Barcelona and two goals at Bayern Munich. These two performances against top-quality opposition show he is becoming the player everyone believes he can be. He has shown he is a big-game player. It will be fascinating to see who plays better between him and Foden. Despite Neymar’s childish antics on the football pitch, he is a great player. Neymar has 41 Champions League goals and can be an equivalent to Mbappe. This without a doubt makes PSG so dangerous because Mbappe and Neymar are world-class players.
The unsung hero of PSG is Keylor Navas. He was sensational against Bayern Munich. Unquestionably making every big save versus an offensive machine in Bayern Munich. Navas is a proven winner. PSG has a huge advantage in the goalkeeper. Whoever wins this first leg will have the upper hand because they will be known what is needed to win for the second leg. In this clash of contrasting styles of football, the winner will be whoever plays their football better.
Main Image Credit
Embed from Getty Images