Five talking points ahead of Feyenoord v Manchester City

12 September 2017

Manchester City face Dutch champions Feyenoord in the first match of their latest Champions League campaign on Wednesday.

Here, Press Association Sport looks at some talking points ahead of the Group F clash.


City's new Brazilian goalkeeper was cleared of serious injury following his nasty clash with Liverpool's Sadio Mane at the weekend but remains a doubt. The £35million looked in a bad way as he was carried off on a stretcher after receiving treatment on the field for around eight minutes during Saturday's Premier League game. A photograph released since has shown eight stitches in wounds on the side of his face. The 24-year-old does has been impressive but playing him again so soon could be risky.


City boss Pep Guardiola has started with both his main strikers up front in three of their four games so far with Jesus deployed alone in the other. Guardiola has indicated he will vary his approach throughout the campaign, saying there will be games when both players, either one or other, or neither will play. Yet on the evidence of the 5-0 thrashing of Liverpool, the pair have the beginnings of a good understanding. Strike partnerships may have gone out of fashion to a degree but the potency of these two could change that, at City at least.


This is the club's sixth successive Champions League campaign but they are still to really come of age in the competition despite reaching the semi-finals in 2016 and then bringing in two-time winning manager Guardiola. The team fell short at the last-16 stage last season, exposed by the attacking brilliance of Monaco. Guardiola has since addressed some areas of weakness, notably in goal and both full-back positions. He now has more players for his desired style but City may not have bridged the gap to the elite yet.


The general opinion after the draw was that City should be happy but they have come unstuck against Dutch champions before, losing to Ajax in 2012. Guardiola has also said Napoli are one of the three best sides in Europe in terms of style while the long trip to face Shakhtar Donetsk in Kharkiv in December could be tricky.


The Rotterdam club, coached by former Arsenal player Giovanni van Bronkhorst, won their first Dutch title in 18 years last season and are returning to the Champions League group stage for the first time since 2002. They have opened their campaign with four successive wins and again top the Eredivisie. Goalkeeper Brad Jones will be remembered in England for spells with Middlesbrough and Liverpool while midfielder Karim El Ahmadi was at Aston Villa from 2012-14 and scored one of his three Premier League goals against City.