BARCELONA, 12 Feb. (EUROPA PRESS) –
Manchester City visits Copenhagen this Tuesday at Parken (9:00 p.m.) in the first leg of the round of 16 of the Champions League, in a duel to which the English arrive in the midst of a winning streak in the Premier League and much more exciting than some Danes who have had to prepare for this clash based on friendlies, in the middle of the winter break in their league.
Clash of very different realities that do nothing but favor Pep Guardiola's men, already great favorites against the Danes and even more so taking into account this opposite scenario in which they are. Some, the 'citizen', used to playing at full capacity and adding victory after victory against others, the locals, who start their engines in the middle of the 'citizen' hurricane.
Even so, the Champions League is such a 'sweetheart' for Copenhagen that they don't care if they have been some friendlies or the Atlantic Cup as their training base. They want to talk face to face with City and, at least, arrive alive when they return to the Etihad Stadium, and to that end they will have Parken as a great ally and also a somewhat stronger cold than the one the Manchester team is used to.
The pressure, furthermore, is all in the backpacks of Pep Guardiola's players. The only ones who will be highlighted in the press if they fail to win will be them. For the locals, even a tie would be considered good and, with the surprise factor on their side, they will fight to make the giant kneel and bring him down from the sky, which they hope will not be the 'sky blue' color that characterizes them but rather white and covered by threatening clouds. Even ancient Viking beliefs will be invoked to discourage a City team that is really thrown into this clash.
In the Premier League, Guardiola's men have just beaten the punished Everton (2-0) with a double from Erling Haaland, their great scoring beast who is already in top form and who is accustomed to the Scandinavian climate. The streak is now six consecutive victories and they have the lead within a match's reach, since they are currently second, 2 points behind Liverpool but with one less game, which they have to make up for having played and won the Club World Cup.
Adding all the competitions, including that Club World Cup with which they won the fifth title of 2023 – a record in England -, Manchester City has won ten games and they want Copenhagen to join that list, in a 'Champions' in which they defend the crown and in which they enter their decisive phase; the playoffs.
Of course, in the first and only precedent between both clubs in the Champions League, in the 2022-23 campaign, the Copenhagen 'Lions' were not favorites either and City could only take one point back to Manchester. It was in Group G, in the group stage, but Parken's 0-0 draw was not repeated at the Etihad Stadium, where the 'citizen' team was clearly superior and gave a 'little hand' (5-0) to the team from the Danish capital.