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Nov 27, 2018 at 8pm UK at ​Stade de Gerland
Attendance: 56,039
Man CityManchester City
Cornet (55', 81')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Laporte (62'), Aguero (83')

Preview: Lyon vs. Manchester City - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole provides team news, predicted lineups and a full preview of Tuesday's Champions League tie between Lyon and Manchester City.

Manchester City take on Lyon at the Groupama Stadium on matchday five of the 2018-19 Champions League, requiring just a point to secure their place in the last 16 of the competition for the sixth season running.

The Premier League champions have recovered from a sluggish start to their European campaign by winning three in a row, whereas their opponents are winless since coming away from the Etihad Stadium with a shock victory in September.


Lyon's Nabil Fekir celebrates scoring against Manchester City in their Champions League clash on September 19, 2018© Reuters

Lyon will only have themselves to blame if they fail to secure a place in the knockout stage of UEFA's showpiece competition, having done the hard work by coming away from Manchester with a 2-1 win 10 weeks ago.

First-half goals from Maxwel Cornet and Nabil Fekir would prove enough for the French side - Bernardo Silva's strike acting as nothing more than a consolation - but they have since played out three successive draws on the continent.

A 2-2 home draw with Shakhtar Donetsk can be considered two points gained on the face of it, as Lyon trailed by a couple of goals early in the second period, but the 3-3 and 2-2 draws with Hoffenheim were very much two points dropped on both occasions, with their opponents netting in stoppage time in the home and away games.

Lyon could so easily have been home and dry and this stage, but they may now have to pick up at least a point when they travel to Shakhtar on the final matchday. The Ukrainian side sit bottom of Group F on two points, four off Les Gones, while Hoffenheim are a point better off ahead of their home match with Shakhtar.

It could well be all change in Group F come the end of play on Tuesday, then, and all of a sudden progression out of the group stage for the first time in three attempts is not so clear cut for Bruno Genesio's men.

Three draws in a row leaves Lyon with a return of just one defeat in their last eight European outings, scoring two or more in each of their last five, and they have proved to be tough to beat on their own patch.

CSKA Moscow left the Groupama Stadium with a 3-2 victory in the last 16 of last season's Europa League - the only European loss Les Gones have suffered at home in 12 matches since going down to Juventus in October 2016.

Another draw may not be enough to secure a passage through to the knockouts for the 2010 semi-finalists, who are competing at this stage for a 15th time - the most of any Ligue 1 side - though it will definitely be enough to keep them in second place ahead of a potentially huge showdown with Shakhtar in two weeks' time.

Having overcome Saint-Etienne with a 1-0 win on Friday night to remain second in the Ligue 1 standings, while at the same time making it just one defeat in 14 matches overall, Genesio will no doubt be confident of keeping his side's European hopes alive against a team many have backed to go all the way.

Recent form in Champions League: WDDD
Recent form (all competitions): DWDDWW

Manchester City

Manchester City players celebrate David Silva's goal against West Ham United on November 24, 2018© Reuters

Defeat to Lyon on matchday one made it four losses in a row for Man City in the Champions League, taking into account their disappointing quarter-final defeat to Liverpool last season, but Pep Guardiola appears to have re-found the winning formula.

A late David Silva goal to earn a 2-1 comeback win in Hoffenheim could well prove to be a turning point in City's quest to conquer Europe for the first time, followed up with far more comfortable 3-0 and 6-0 wins against Shakhtar.

The six-goal thrashing of the Ukrainian side earlier this month was the Citizens' most ruthless ever display on the continent - a far cry from their performance against Lyon earlier in the competition when Guardiola hit out at his players' profligacy.

Despite winning three in a row to climb to the top of Group F, however, City have still only won four of their last nine matches overall in the Champions League, with five of those ending in defeat.

Their away record is pretty mixed, too, claiming three victories and suffering two defeats in their last five, so Guardiola will not exactly be resting on his laurels for the trip to Lyon and the visit of Hoffenheim, even if only a point is required.

For all of City's dominance domestically over the past 15 months, their inability to match or indeed better their Champions League semi-final appearance from 2016 remains a huge disappointment, and there is no doubt that it will leave a blot on Guardiola's copybook should his side again fall short this time around.

City's recent form, combined with the demise of three-in-a-row champions Real Madrid, certainly suggests that they have what it takes to finally make a serious impact in what is their eighth successive appearance in the group phase.

Saturday's 4-0 thrashing of West Ham United took City's goals tally to 30 in an eight-match winning run since drawing 0-0 with Liverpool on October 7, while just two goals have been shipped during that period. Whichever way you look at it, Guardiola's men clearly mean business.

Recent form in Champions League: LWWW
Recent form (all competitions): WWWWWW

Team News

Nabil Fekir in action for Lyon on September 23, 2018© Reuters

Kevin De Bruyne remains absent for City due to the ligament damage sustained in the EFL Cup win against Fulham, while Claudio Bravo and Benjamin Mendy are also long-term absentees.

Guardiola was without Bernardo for the win at the London Stadium due to a knock sustained on international duty with Portugal, but the influential midfielder is expected to return to the starting lineup for this trip to France.

Nicolas Otamendi was brought in for a first league start in two months at the weekend after recovering from a problem of his own, but the rested John Stones appears certain to reclaim his place in the heart of the back four, either alongside Aymeric Laporte or possibly Vincent Kompany.

With 10 matches to come between now and the end of the year, changes could be made in midfield and the forward line, as Gabriel Jesus - scorer of a hat-trick against Shakhtar - and Riyad Mahrez are pressing for starts, as is youngster Phil Foden.

In terms of the hosts, skipper Fekir has declared himself fit to play after suffering an injury scare in the 1-0 win over Saint-Etienne.

Fekir was taken off at half time with an adductor injury, but he insisted after the game that it is "nothing serious" and he will be part of Lyon's squad.

Ex-City defender Jason Denayer netted the winner for Les Gones in that most recent outing to get off the mark for the club, and the Belgium international can expect to retain his place in a three-man backline for this daunting test.

Elsewhere, Genesio could go with Moussa Dembele alongside Fekir, fitness permitting, while former Manchester United attacker Memphis Depay is another threat thanks to five goals in his last seven matches.

Lyon possible starting lineup:
Lopes; Denayer, Marcelo, Morel; Rafael, Ndombele, Aouar, Mendy; Fekir; Depay, Dembele

Manchester City possible starting lineup:
Ederson; Walker, Stones, Laporte, Delph; Foden, Fernandinho, Bernardo; Mahrez, Jesus, Sane

Head To Head

These two sides have met on just one previous occasion in UEFA competition - Lyon's 2-1 win at the Etihad Stadium in September.

Man City have visited France only twice before, meanwhile, drawing 2-2 at Paris Saint-Germain in the 2015-16 Champions League quarter-finals and losing 3-1 to Monaco in the round of 16 two seasons ago.

Les Gones have won three in a row against English opposition, including a 3-0 victory over Everton here in the Europa League last term, and have lost just once home and away in seven such matches.

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We say: Lyon 0-2 Manchester City

Manchester City will be keen to claim all three points from their trip to France to not only exact revenge on Lyon but to also make certain of top spot. A draw may well be enough for the hosts to make it through to the last 16, depending on the result in the other Group F match taking place on Tuesday, but it will take an almighty effort to stop the Citizens for a second time in three months.

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Who will win Tuesday's Champions League tie between Lyon and Manchester City?

Manchester City
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