Pep Guardiola has made seven changes to his City side for our UEFA Champions League Round of 16 second leg with FC Copenhagen.

Kyle Walker, John Stones, Nathan Ake, Phil Foden, Kevin De Bruyne, Bernardo Silva and Jeremy Doku drop out of the side that beat Manchester United on Sunday.

Rico Lewis, Manuel Akanji, Josko Gvardiol, Mateo Kovacic, Matheus Nunes, Oscar Bobb and Julian Alvarez come in.

Ederson, Ruben Dias, Rodrigo and Erling Haaland are the only four players to start both matches.

Gvardiol makes his first appearance since the win at Brentford early last month while both Jack Grealish and Jeremy Doku aren’t considered fully fit for this one.

City have a 3-1 lead after last month’s first leg in the Danish capital and we’re looking to seal our place in the last eight of the competition for a seventh successive season tonight.


CITY XI: Ederson, Lewis, Akanji, Dias (C), Gvardiol, Rodrigo, Kovacic, Bobb, Alvarez, Nunes, Haaland

Subs: Ortega Moreno, Carson, Walker, Stones, Ake, De Bruyne, Bernardo, Gomez, Foden, Wright, Susoho, Hamilton

COPENHAGEN XI: Grabara (C), Diks, Vavro, Elyounoussi, Oskarsson, Jelert, Ankersen, McKenna, Achouri, Clem, Froholdt

Subs: Runarsson, Buur, Sorensen, Mattsson, Larsson, Cornelius, Boilesen, Meling, Hojlund, Bardghji


You can expect Rico Lewis to start on the right of the defence with Josko Gvardiol on the other flank. Captain Ruben Dias will be joined by Manuel Akanji in the centre.

Rodrigo and Mateo Kovacic will be at the heart of midfield with Oscar Bobb, Julian Alvarez and Matheus Nunes ahead of them.

All of those will be looking to support central striker Erling Haaland.

Strong spine

While Pep Guardiola has rung the changes for this game, he’s clearly keen to keep an experienced spine to his side.

Ederson, Ruben Dias, Rodrigo and Erling Haaland running right through the middle of the pitch will be there to provide a reliable, calming presence to the younger players and those who haven’t featured as much in recent weeks.

Match stats

     City remain unbeaten against FC Copenhagen in European competition (W3 D2), with the last meeting between the sides at the Etihad Stadium ending in a 5-0 win for the Citizens (in October 2022).

      FC Copenhagen have never won away from home against English opposition in European competition, drawing two and losing five of their previous seven attempts. The Danish side have also failed to score a goal in each of the last four in this run, all of which have been in the UEFA Champions League.

     Pep Guardiola has never been eliminated from a two-legged UEFA Champions League tie after winning the first leg away from home, progressing on all previous nine occasions when doing so (six times with Man City, twice with Barcelona, and once with FC Bayern Munich).

      This will be just FC Copenhagen’s fourth game in the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League, while they’re winless in the previous three (D1 L2). They’ve not won away from home in the competition since December 2016 (2-0 v Club Brugge) and have only scored two goals in their six away trips since that last victory (D2 L4).

      Manchester City have won each of our last nine games in the UEFA Champions League and could become just the third side to win 10+ in a row in the competition, after Real Madrid (a run of 10 in February 2015) and FC Bayern Munich (a run of 15 in November 2020 and a 10-game run in November 2013).

      Manchester City have scored at least three goals in each of our last eight home games in the UEFA Champions League, and could become the first to do so in as many as nine in a row at home in the European Cup/UEFA Champions League (three other teams previously had a run of eight: FC Bayern München in 2016, Real Madrid in 1964 and Benfica in 1962).

      Manchester City have the highest pass completion rate under pressure of any team in the UEFA Champions League this season (90.6%), while FC Copenhagen (76.2%) have the lowest such completion rate among all teams involved in the round of 16.

      Manchester City’s two top scorers in the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League are Kevin De Bruyne (12) and Bernardo Silva (11), both of whom netted in the first leg against FC Copenhagen. De Bruyne also assisted in that match, and has been directly involved in 20 goals in his last 22 appearances in the knockout stages of the competition (10 goals, 10 assists – excluding finals).

      As of the end of the first leg matches in the round of 16, the three players who had applied the most pressures in the UEFA Champions League this season were FC Copenhagen trio Mohamed Elyounoussi (683), Viktor Claesson (651) and Elias Achouri (628).

      Phil Foden has been directly involved in seven goals for Manchester City in the UEFA Champions League this season (four goals, three assists), already his most in a single campaign. The 23-year-old also leads all players in the competition this term for passes that have broken the opposition’s defensive line (17).