Match Coverage

Predicted Man City XI vs. Napoli: Danilo to start in a largely unchanged side

The two form sides in Europe clash in, arguably, the most exciting Champions League game in the competition so far.

On Tuesday evening we welcome Napoli to the Etihad Stadium, a team that has won eight straight games in Serie A this season, scoring 26 goals and conceding just five in the process. Pep Guardiola has described them as ‘one of the three best teams in Europe’, so it’s certainly not a game that he’ll take lightly.

Our squad is in great form following the 7-2 demolition of Stoke City and I don’t think we’ll see too much rotation from side that remains unchanged in the last two. Here’s my predicted team for this one…

Team Prediction

We still have Vincent Kompany and Benjamin Mendy out injured, but apart from that we have a fully fit squad.

In goal it’s going to be an easy choice for the gaffer and I expect Ederson to continue his solid run of form. He had no chance with either goal on Saturday and brings huge confidence to the defensive line.

At the back the only change that I’d be tempted to make would be bringing in Danilo for Delph. The Brazilian is more solid defensively and will provide more support to his centre-half, in this case Otamendi, against an attacking line-up. On the right side of the defence it picks itself, with Walker and Stones building a fantastic understanding between themselves.

In middle of the park I wouldn’t make any changes, with Fernandinho, De Bruyne and David Silva forming a central trio. Whilst De Bruyne has been the standout the performer in recent weeks, we’ve also seen impeccable performances from the other two. Fernandinho appears to be back to his most consistent best and David Silva knits together the pattern of our play, freeing up space for De Bruyne to unleash his creative genius and unbelievable delivery upon the opposition. I’d love to see either Gundogan or Bernardo get an opportunity, but it’s perhaps not the right game for either in a game that could edge City closer to winning Group F.

Up top it would also remain unchanged. Our young attacking trident of Gabriel Jesus, Sterling and Sané have been in scintillating form all season and the speed, chemistry and ruthlessness has been a complete joy to watch. They’ve scored 20 goals between them in all competitions, with even more assists, and although Kun Agüero made the bench against Stoke, I still wouldn’t risk him from the start.

On the bench I expect it to be Bravo, Delph, Mangala, Touré, Gündoğan, Bernardo Silva and Agüero. This is a strong bench with at least four of those easily replacing any starters should Pep wish.

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