Manchester City vs Atalanta preview
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Last Updated: 22/10/19 6:36pm
Team news, key stats and predictions ahead of Man City vs Atalanta as the Champions League group stages continue.
Manchester City defenders Kyle Walker and Nicolas Otamendi are both back in training ahead of Tuesday's Champions League Group C clash with Atalanta at the Etihad Stadium.
Walker missed Saturday's Premier League win at Crystal Palace through illness and Otamendi was also absent with a knock sustained on international duty.
Fellow defender John Stones could also feature after being an unused substitute at the weekend following his recovery from a thigh injury. Aymeric Laporte and Leroy Sane remain on the sidelines.
Duvan Zapata is a doubt with Atalanta's leading scorer nursing a thigh injury he picked up over the international break.
If Zapata fails a late fitness test, Luis Muriel is expected to lead the line.
Marten de Roon is pushing for a recall having been named among the substitutes during Saturday's 3-3 draw with Lazio.
Manchester City and Atalanta have never previously met in European competition.
Atalanta are the fifth different Italian side Man City have faced in UEFA European competition (also Juventus, Milan, Napoli and Roma), registering at least one win over each of the previous four.
Atalanta's previous European meetings with English opponents were in the 2017-18 Europa League group stages, winning both games against Everton, including a 5-1 hammering at Goodison Park.
Manchester City have won their opening two UEFA Champions League group stage matches this season; on the previous 27 occasions English sides have done so, they have all gone on to progress to the next round.
Atalanta are the first Italian side to lose their first two UEFA Champions League matches; the last team to lose their opening three in the competition was Otelul Galati of Romania in 2011-12, who lost all six of their group stage games that season.
Atalanta will be the 39th different team Pep Guardiola has faced in the UEFA Champions League - he has registered a win over 35 of the previous 38, failing only against Celtic, Chelsea and Liverpool.
Charlie Nicholas' prediction
Pep Guardiola made so many changes at the weekend and Manchester City still got the job done. They were not outstanding but they took the hit to get the results of previous weeks out of their system.
The vulnerable side is that they do not have any centre-backs, leaving Rodri and Fernandinho there for the Crystal Palace game.
Rodri could stroll it there, and he has a bit of Virgil van Dijk in him. Nothing seems to rush or phase him and he performed very well. It was a positive to see City register a clean sheet.
Raheem Sterling is heavily involved, you can take your pick out of Bernardo, David Silva or Riyad Mahrez, while Gabriel Jesus is scoring. He will probably make three or four changes again here but I expect them to win comfortably.
Jesus has responded when he hasn't played, but so has Phil Foden. Give him some game time and get him involved. This can be the balance that gives him a starting place against Atalanta. It will be a comfortable night for City.
CHARLIE PREDICTS: 4-0 (11/1 with Sky Bet)
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