When Manchester City visit Roma on Wednesday evening both sides will be going all out to claim second place in Group E and earn a place in the Round of 16 of this season’s Champions League. Both sides – along with CSKA Moscow – are currently on five points, seven behind runaway leaders Bayern Munich, so the runners-up spot is very much up for grabs.
Manuel Pellegrini’s men will progress to the next round if they get the victory in Rome and CSKA are unable to win in Munich. The Citizens will also make it through if they earn a score draw and German champions Bayern beat CSKA. If City and CSKA both win, however, it will be the Russians who progress on the back of their superior head to head record with City. Okay, that’s that sorted then!
Man City are very much up against it in our opinion given they will be missing their best player and most potent goal threat Sergio Aguero, who picked up a knee injury early in the game against Everton at the weekend. Add to that the facts that Yaya Toure is still suspended (just as he is starting to find some form) and that Vincent Kompany is struggling to recover from a hamstring injury and Roma will not be overly concerned by what they see on the opposition’s team sheet.
Roma have no major injury concerns ahead of the game, but City will at least see a glimmer of hope emerge from the fact that Rudi Garcia’s men lost their 100% home league record at the weekend when they managed only a 2-2 draw against mid-table Sassuolo. That makes it three draws and three defeats from their last 10 in all competitions, and despite their absentees, City will certainly give it a decent go in Rome.
If you are considering having a bet on the match, you might be interested in BetVictor’s latest betting offer which will refund losing bets on a range of markets if Man City fail to make it to the knockout stages of the Champions League. The refund would come in the form of a free bet and relates to pre-match bets of up to £10 placed on any of the following markets: half time/full time, correct score, spincast, scorecast, or first/last/anytime goalscorer.
When these sides met in Manchester in September it ended 1-1, and we wouldn’t be surprised to see something similar here. Realistically we think the home side will have enough to nick this one, but with the insurance policy of the BetVictor offer it might be worth backing the draw at half time with City to win by the final whistle at odds of 6/1.
If you are looking for a big, big payout, however, the scorecast could be the way to go, so why not try Frank Lampard to score first and City to win 2-1 at monster odds of 60/1? A nice profit of £600 awaits if that £10 bet comes in, and if it doesn’t but City fail to make it through to the next round, at least you get your stake back as a free bet.