Guardiola will be looking for his club to continue their recent good form despite Gabriel Jesus’ absence
Radamel Falcao is the name on everyone’s lips ahead of Monaco’s trip to Manchester as the strike returns in the City one more time, this time as Monaco’s highest scorer after his failed stints at City’s biggest Premier League rivals.
Considering how Barcelona have fared against second-placed PSG the other week, this will be far from an easy job for Pep Guardiola and City considering that Monaco sit top of the Ligue 1 table after 26 rounds. Monaco are the highest scoring side in Europe currently, averaging two goals per game so far.
A revitalized Falcao, an in-form Bernardo Silva, an unbeatable Daniel Subasic in goal, complemented with the talent of arguably the most in-demand player in France, Fabinho, and led by the brilliant Leonardo Jardim, Monaco have become a force to be reckoned with and a genuine contender for the Champions League Final in June.
Manchester City appear to have came out from the slump they were in recently, beating Crystal Palace, West Ham, Swansea and Bournemouth in the process, conceding just one goal in their last five games.
However, they lost the man that inspired that comeback, Gabriel Jesus, to a metatarsal injury until the end of the season and it seems like they are back where they started with misfiring Sergio Kun Aguero up front.
City have struggled to break down a Championship side on Saturday in the FA Cup and against Monaco they will have to step up to a completely different standard.
In terms of injuries, the hosts will miss the aforementioned Brazilian sensation, Gabriel Jesus, while club captain Vincent Company will have to wait a little longer for his comeback as well. Pep’s biggest enigma will be about who to play on goal as Claudio Bravo is enduring the worst period form and confidence-wise of his career and Willy Caballero is, well, Willy Caballero.
For Monaco, Gabriel Boschilla is out for the rest of the season with an anterior crucial ligament injury.
Verdict: Monaco enjoyed playing against Tottenham in the early stages of the Champions League, beating them twice in the process and it shouldn’t surprise anyone should they repeat that feat against City. No matter how difficult it is to accept it, French giants PSG and Monaco are currently a level above the majority of English top 6 teams and IT WILL be on display during these two matches.