English giants Manchester City will face off against Spanish powerhouses Real Madrid in a Champions League last 16 first leg encounter at the Santiago Bernabeu on Wednesday night.

On paper, the two teams are similarly matched and the outcome of the tie will be hard to predict.

City must however aim to avoid defeat in Spain where they will definitely be met with a hostile reception.

The two teams last met in the Champions League semi-finals in 2016. It was a close tie with Madrid just edging City 1-0.

The first leg of that tie at the Etihad Stadium ended 0-0 and Madrid won the second leg 1-0 at the Santiago Bernabeu after Fernando scored an own goal.

City are not going to win the Premier League this season and so their campaign will be defined by how they perform in the Champions League.

As things stand, they are set to be banned from Europe’s premier club competition for the next two seasons.

This should give City extra motivation to finally bring the one major trophy that has eluded them to the Etihad Stadium this season.

City do not have any major injury concerns heading into the first leg against Madrid.

Raheem Sterling did not play during the club’s win over Leicester City last weekend whilst defender Aymeric Laporte was substituted.

City manager Pep Guardiola has indicated that both players will be ready for the first leg, according to Manchester Evening News.

The report added that long-term injury casualty Leroy Sane is nearing full fitness though Guardiola does not want to rush him back into action.

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