Red Star Belgrade vs Manchester City
Stadion Rajko Mitic forms the backdrop for a lopsided Champions League showdown between Red Star Belgrade and Manchester City.
On the verge of finishing bottom of their Champions League group for the third time on the trot, Red Star Belgrade have nothing but pride left to play for after collecting just one point from the opening five rounds (D1, L4). While the perennial Serbian champions would rather bow out in style, their hopes of staging an upset against the reigning Champions League holders look far-fetched despite an outstanding run of just one defeat from their last 28 home games (W23, D4). However, as Liverpool felt in their title-winning 2018/19 campaign, the ‘Red-Whites’ can be a tricky opposition in Belgrade, with an unlikely 2-0 win against the ‘Reds’ forming part of Red Star’s impressive all-time home record against Premier League visitors (W6, D2, L3).
Visiting Manchester City will have none of it as they seek another confidence booster following a come-from-behind 2-1 league win at Luton Town last weekend. That result ended City’s dismal four-game winless top-flight run (D3, L1), reigniting their bid to become the first club to win four consecutive Premier League titles. Things look far more promising in Europe, as Pep Guardiola’s men secured a top-place finish in Group G with two games to spare, courtesy of a flawless five-game start (W5). The ‘Citizens’ overhauled a 1-0 HT deficit to beat Red Star 3-1 in the reverse fixture en route to solidifying their intimidating 34-game form in the Champions League group stages (W26, D6, L2). Moreover, Guardiola’s high-flyers are unbeaten in their last 19 European outings (W14, D5).