PSG vs Man City Preview and Betting Tip

by | Apr 26, 2021

PSG vs Man City Preview and Betting Tip

The attacking talent that will be on show in the first leg of this Champions League semi-final is incredible. Mbappé, De Bruyne, Neymar, Mahrez, Di Maria, Foden. That’s just six of the players that could be involved and we haven’t even mentioned the likes of Icardi, Bernardo Silva, Draxler, Jesus, Sterling and Gundogan. This has all the makings of an absolute classic and trying to pick a winner won’t be an easy task. PSG vs Man City kicks off at 8.00 pm on Wednesday night, check out Dave Stevos’ preview and betting tip below.

Can Poch Outfox Pep Again?

Mauricio Pochettino is no stranger to taking on teams managed by Pep Guardiola. He managed to lead Spurs to a 2-0 win in his first match up against the Spaniard. He also masterminded a 4-4 aggregate win on away goals in the Champions League quarter finals back in 2019. Pep had the upper hand when it came to the Premier League but there is no doubt that Pochettino has proved that he is well able to go toe to toe with Guardiola.

PSG have performed well under the Argentinian for the most part. There have been one or two hiccups but they are back on track in Ligue 1 and in the Champions League quarter-finals they were brilliant in both legs against a top quality Bayern Munich outfit. The first leg will go down as a classic and some of the attacking play was scintillating. However, PSG’s defending left a bit to be desired at times and that is an area that City will look to exploit on Wednesday night.

Mbappé and Neymar will undoubtedly grab the headlines but if PSG are to advance from this tie they will need to be solid at the back. Idrissa Gueye will likely be tasked with shadowing De Bruyne and if he doesn’t keep close tabs on the Belgian playmaker, that could prove to be very costly. Against a side like City you need to defend from the front so the star players will need to put in a proper shift. If they do, PSG could be hard to stop.

Litmus Test For City

It is blindingly obvious that Pep Guardiola’s main objective at Man City is delivering a Champions League title. So far, he hasn’t managed to do that. City have landed multiple Premier League titles and EFL Cups, as well as an FA Cup, under his stewardship but as of yet, the big one has eluded him. It was a similar story during his spell at Bayern. Will this finally be the year that he lands the big fish for the first time since 2011?

Well, if it is his defence is going to need to be at their very best. John Stones has had a great season but in recent weeks he has been reverting to some of his old bad habits. He was lucky his red card against Villa didn’t cost his team the match. He also made a couple of poor mistakes for club and country in the past month. Will Guardiola trust him against Neymar and Mbappé? Stones and Dias has been the go-to centre back pairing for Pep but he does have other options in Laporte and Garcia.

Gabriel Jesus will probably start up top and he will be flanked by Mahrez and Foden. The biggest question is who will play in midfield. Will Pep opt for the safety of Fernandinho and Rodri at the base with De Bruyne in the advanced role? Or will he play just one holding midfielder and either Gundogan or Bernardo Silva? Guardiola has often surprised with his team selections and tactics in these big Champions League ties and I think he will play it safe in this opening leg.

PSG vs Man City Recent Form

PSG

Man City

Metz (a) W 3-1

Tottenham (n) W 1-0

Angers SCO (h) W 5-0

Aston Villa (a) W 2-1

St Etienne (h) W 3-2

Chelsea (n) L 0-1

Bayern Munich (h) L 0-1

Borussia Dortmund (a) W 2-1

Strasbourg (a) W 4-1

Leeds (h) L 1-2

 

As the form table illustrates, PSG are in better overall form than Man City in recent weeks. Their sole defeat vs Munich was in reality a win as it was the result that saw them through to the semi-finals. They netted 15 goals in their other 4 matches and they certainly won’t be lacking in confidence or self-belief on Wednesday.

Man City will also be in good spirits following their hard fought 1-0 EFL Cup final win vs Spurs on Sunday. However, they lost 1-0 vs Chelsea in the FA Cup semi-final earlier this month and they also came unstuck in the Premier League against 10 man Leeds. They weren’t exactly convincing in their 2-1 win vs Villa either. PSG will provide a much sterner examination than any of those teams and I am not sure that City will pass the test.     

PSG vs Man City Betting Tip

When I checked the odds for this match I was surprised to see that Man City are clear favourites. They are as short as 6/5 and PSG are as big as 23/10. Unibet are best about the draw at odds of 29/10. City have form for throwing in erratic performances in the latter stages of this competition. The shock 3-1 loss to Lyon last season immediately springs to mind, as do their two performances vs Pochettino’s Spurs a couple of years ago.

PSG, on the other hand, know what it takes to reach a Champions League final. They lost in the decider last year to Bayern and they will be going all out to make up for that disappointment this time around. Given the abundance of attacking taent on display there will surely be goals in this encounter and at the prices, the hosts represent the best value. The recommended bet is PSG to win and both teams to score at odds of 9/2 with Betfair.  

PSG vs Man City Tips: PSG to win and both teams to score @ 9/2 Betfair

Key Quotes – PSG vs Man City

Mauricio Pochettino – “It’s important to continue to battle, to maintain this mentality and to play as we are in each match with our strengths. We are on the right track, there is still a month of competitive football to go, we are still in the cup, in the league and in the Champions League. We are battling to win all three, we want to accomplish what we want to do at the end of the season.

Pep Guardiola – “We’re really happy to win the first title and four in a row in this competition (EFL Cup). We are in the [Champions League] semi-final for only the second time, we always had one eye on that but we take every game seriously – otherwise you can’t win four in a row. We won the first one, we are close to a second one (Premier League title) and now we go to Paris for another one. The way we played today was fantastic”

Dave Stevos

 

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