The Crystal Ball: Manchester City v Olympiakos

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November 2, 2020, City of Manchester Stadium, Manchester, UK | Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City takes on Greek side Olympiakos in Group C of the UEFA Champions League.

The Cityzens will be looking to continue their perfect start to Group C with a win over Greek giants Olympiakos. Coming into the match, Pep has had his hands full dealing with injuries to key players, namely Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus.

In their absence, Raheem Sterling and Ferran Torres have been leading the City line with inconsistent results. Sky Sports is reporting that Gabriel Jesus “is hoping to prove his fitness” and secure selection for Tuesday’s match at the Etihad and ahead of Liverpool’s colossal visit at the weekend.

Speaking on the unique challenge of the Champions League, Pep Guardiola told reporters:

It’s tough, really tough. There’s many examples to prove what I’m saying…There are more games with managers better prepared, more games where they know what they have to do.

Teams are better…It’s hard to qualify [for the knockout stage], every time we qualify I say to players ‘congratulations, enjoy that moment’ but it’s the first success of the season, to qualify for the next round. (Via: Sky Sports)

Olympiakos, meanwhile, will know that they are coming to one of the most challenging places to play in all of Europe. If previous encounters are anything to go by, this could be a tough day for the Greek champions. Pep has won his last two meetings against Olympiakos winning 3-0 away and 4-0 at home – while managing Bayern Munich in 2015/16.

To make matters worse, Opta Stats show that Olympiakos has lost 14 of their last 16 European club competition matches when playing in England. The bright side is that they have won on their last two trips, beating Arsenal both times, once in 2015 and once in February 2020.

Under manager Pedro Martins, this team can be a tough nut to crack, having lost to Porto 2-0, but beating Marseille 1-0. Manchester City are clear favorites but will not take this opposition too lightly at their own peril.

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