Manchester City travel to already crowned French champions Paris Saint-Germain to contest in their first-ever quarter-final first-leg in the Champions League on Wednesday night.
The Citizens; who eased past newly promoted AFC Bournemouth 4-0 in the Premier League at the weekend, will face a completely different challenge inside the Parc des Princes this evening, with Laurent Blanc’s Ligue 1 victors a remarkable 25 points clear in their domestic top-flight division.
Manuel Pellegrini’s side have never reached the last-eight of Europe’s elite-club competition and face a much trickier task to reach the semi-finals having defeated Ukraine outfit Dynamo Kiev in the previous round.
Only Chelsea (2012 and 2014) and Manchester United have reached the last-four of the Champions League since 2010.
What’s more; PSG and City have only ever met once before, with the game ending in a goalless stalemate during their 2008-09 UEFA Cup group stage fixture back in December 2008 inside the Etihad Stadium.
The Premier League side fielded the likes of Tal Ben-Haim, Stephen Ireland, Darius Vassell, Benjani and Dietmar Hamann against their French opponents.
Tonight’s home side are unbeaten in their last four meetings with Premier League opposition; all of which have come against Chelsea, but their overall record against English teams is varied – including four wins, five draws and four defeats.
More concerning for City is the fact that the last three Champions League knockout encounters between Ligue 1 and Premier League clubs have all seen the French team eliminate their English counterpart.
Secondly; Pellegrini’s men have kept the fewest clean sheets out of all of this season’s quarter-finalists, just one shut out in eight attempts.
However many eyes will be focused on each team’s attacking line-up, with both side’s possessing star strikers in Sweden superstar Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Argentinian ace Sergio Aguero.
Ibrahimovic has scored in each of his last four Champions League appearances, including two strikes against Premier League rivals Chelsea during the last-16 stage.
Meanwhile opposite target man Aguero has scored a sensational 16 goals in his last 18 starts in the competition.
PSG boss Laurent Blanc is expected to recall winger Angel Di Maria after the former Manchester United man was rested during Saturday’s 4-1 victory over Nice in Ligue 1.
However fellow midfielders Marco Verratti and Javier Pastore are ruled out.
City goalkeeper Joe Hart is fit to play against PSG after returning from a calf problem which he sustained back in March.
But visiting manager Pellegrini will be unable to select midfielder Yaya Toure, who has failed to overcome a knee problem.
Fellow central midfielder Fabian Delph (Achilles) has travelled to the French capital, but captain Vincent Kompany (Calf) and forward Raheem Sterling (groin) are certainly out of contention respectively.
League Position: PSG – 1st (Ligue 1 – 80 pts); Man City – 4th (Premier League – 54 pts)
Previous Meeting: Man City 0-0 PSG – December 3, 2008 (UEFA Cup)
Form: PSG – WDWWLW; Man City – LWDDLW
Key Men: PSG – Zlatan Ibrahimovic; Man City – Sergio Aguero
Shoot Says: PSG 2-0 Man City