Manchester City return to Champions League action on Tuesday evening, as they take on Portuguese side Sporting in the first leg of the Champions League knockout round.
City topped their group ahead of French outfit Paris Saint-Germain, setting up a clash with Sporting, and Spanish midfielder Rodri has admitted he feels that City’s experience from last season will make them stronger this campaign. Pep Guardiola’s side overcame their Champions League quarter-final demonstrative last year as they reached the final, but were unable to lift the famous trophy following a narrow defeat to Chelsea.
Guardiola is expected to select Raheem Sterling in the starting line-up on Tuesday night, after the 27-year-old scored a hat-trick at the weekend in City’s rampant 4-0 win against Norwich.
So, what line-up will Guardiola select? And, what could the final score be?
We used FIFA 22 to get a Champions League score prediction for Sporting CP v Man City on Tuesday and this is what happened…
Sporting v Man City score predicted by simulation
We used kick-off mode in FIFA 22, but didn’t select a team to control, we then selected the teams and watched the match play out by itself, to give us a score prediction.
We predict that Man City could set up in a 4-3-3 formation, with their line-up as follows: Edison; Cancelo, Dias, Laporte, Zinchenko; Rodri, Silva, DeBruyne; Sterling, Foden, Mahrez.
We predict that Sporting could set up in a 5-2-2-1 formation, with their line-up as follows: Adam; Porro, Inacio, Coates, Feddal, Reis; Nunes, Palhinha; Santos, Sarabia; Paulinho.
City struggled to get going in the first half with the home side creating some good chances, as Ederson was drawn into multiple good saves to keep the score level at 0-0 after half an hour.
Guardiola’s side responded with some chances of their own and started to get control of possession before the break, with Sterling having the best chance of the half for City after the 27-year-old drifted in behind the Sporting defence, but his shot was wild and feel high and wide of the top corner.
Just 10 minutes into the second half, City took the lead through Portuguese playmaker Bernardo Silva following a brilliant strike, beating Adan at his near post.
Rodri started the move by firing the ball into Kevin De Bruyne’s feet, the Belgian beat two Sporting players before rolling the ball into Silva, who danced his way into the penalty box and drilled the ball into the back of the net to make it 1- 0.
Former Liverpool defender Sebastian Coates hit the crossbar from a corner, after rising above Ruben Dias and powering his headed effort towards goal, only for Ederson to tip the ball onto the woodwork and behind for another corner as Sporting fought back.
Following his hat-trick at the weekend, Sterling was the man of the moment yet again as he sealed the win with a brilliant strike in the 84th minute.
The English attacker cut in from the left wing after receiving the ball from Zinchenko, beat Pedro Porro and Inacio with some good footwork before lashing a shot across the goal and into the side netting to make it 2-0 to City.
City win against Sporting would be their 13th unbeaten game in a row in all competitions and would give Guardiola’s side a comfortable two-goal advantage heading back to the Etihad for the second leg.
FIFA 22 predicted final score: Sporting 0-2 Manchester City
Here are the full-time match stats.
FIFA 22 predicts that City will struggle to take control of the game in the opening half an hour, but soon find their feet as goals from Bernardo Silva and Raheem Sterling in the second half would seal a crucial 2-0 win and give them the advantage for the second leg at the Etihad.
Sporting showed signs that they could threaten the City defence, but ultimately the quality of Dias, Aymeric Laporte and Ederson would prove to make the difference as Guardiola’s side held out for a vital clean sheet.
What do you think the final score will be? Let us know in the comments!