Foden, Grealish, and Haaland to start, as we look at the best predicted starting 11 and key details for Manchester City UCL 2023-24.
We are one month into the English Premier League, and it’s no surprise that Manchester City are once again leading the charts. They are the only team to not lose any points so far, and it’s a monumental task for other teams to keep pace with them in terms of points otherwise gap in the points table will be too much to catch in a matter of a few game weeks.
But now Cityzens have to play mid-week too as UEFA Champions League is around the corner and group stage matches are starting from September 19th. For a team like current Champions League winners Manchester City, they have to have a very large squad as they compete in every possible tournament. It will be interesting to see what combination Pep Guardiola plays in CL as he has to manage the workload of his star-studded side.
In this article, we will be looking at the best possible starting 11 for Manchester City in the upcoming Champions League group stage where they are placed in a comparatively easy group. They are placed in group G along with RB Leipzig (Germany), BSC Young Boys (Switzerland), and Red Star Belgrade (Serbia). So apart from RB Leipzig, no real challenge should ideally be there for current champions.
One of the straightforward selections as Ederson is one of the best goalkeepers to play in the Premier League. It’s ironic that Ederson and Alison both hail from Brazil, and that’s why he gets a limited chance to play for Brazil. Pep wants his goalkeepers to play tactical roles at the base of the team, and he believes that attacks now start with the goalkeeper. So, Ederson ticks all the boxes that are required in the modern goalkeeper.
#2: Nathan Ake #3: Manuel Akanji #4:Ruben Dias #5 Kyle Walker
Good news came in Manchester City camp last week as Kyle Walker announced that he is not leaving the club. He extended his contract until 2026 with the club. With an injury to John Stones and no game time in the last month or so, he is not expected to start the game as he is still in recovery mode.
We might see new signing Josko Gvardiol start the games for Cityzens very soon. But that should be in the Premier League or the second leg of group-stage fixtures. He has yet to link up with his new teammates and might require substantial game minutes as the first change. So we expect a tried and tested backline comprising of Ake. Akanji, Dias, and Walker start most of the games until John Stones is still nursing his injury.
#6: Rodri #7: Bernardo Silva
Rodri and Bernardo Silva are seasoned campaigners, and they know how to set the pace of the game. They can change the tempo of the game with sheer control of the ball and terrific passing range. With injury to Kevin De Bruyne, their role is more important than ever in this Manchester City setup.
#8: Phil Foden #9: Julian Alvarez #10: Jack Grealish
Phil Foden has proved time and again that he is an integral part of the City team. The Englishmen came as a saviour many times when important goals were needed or raised his game when injuries had hit the squad and filled the gaps well. But in the past couple of seasons, he is more than just a first change. The flamboyant player is a headache for any defense to tackle with his pace and eye for goals.
The World Cup winner Argentinian has been basking with confidence since his triumph with the national team. He only improved as a player since then. Behind Haaland, he is a complete threat to the opposition who put extra men to cover Haaland leaving free space for Alvarez and Grealish to pounce on.
Grealish is finally a settled player in the City squad. He was carrying the tag of his price and was a bit insecure about his place and game time in his initial days as a City player. But last season he showed why Pep wanted him in this very strong Manchester City setup.
With the signing of Nunes this summer, we expect him to play in midfield at a later stage. It will help manage the workload of the squad. By no means it will deteriorate the quality of the starting 11 as he has shown promising signs during his time with Wolves and Sporting CP.
#11: Erling Haaland
Mirror, Mirror, Tell me who is the best-attacking player in the world currently? And we know what answer we will get. The man of the hour ‘ Erling Haaland’. Every team knows by now what havoc Haaland can create if an inch of space is given to him. He is a complete carnage, and was the missing link in the Manchester City setup. His arrival made them win their first-ever Champions League title last season.
This time they look all set to defend their title as they tick all the boxes of a balanced and lethal football team.
Manchester City Best Starting 11 for the UCL 2023-24:
Ederson [gk], Nathan Ake, Manuel Akanji, Ruben Dias, Kyle Walker, Rodri, B. Silva, Phil Foden, Julian Alvarez, Jack Grealish & Erling Haaland
Thanks for reading! What’s your take on the Manchester City Starting 11 for the UCL season 2023-24? Please email your thoughts to email@example.com.
Akshay is an author at Footbalytics. His love for football started way back in 1998 when Ronaldo (Not Cristiano) was his first football hero, and the list keeps getting longer ever since.
Though Akshay is a Teacher by profession, he firmly believes that there is no better classroom than the Sports field and no better Teacher than Sports.