Group C of the 2020/21 Champions League campaign has two former European champions and one team bidding to win the title this year. That club was attempting to do the same in the years before, but always fell short of doing that. FC Porto and Marseille, who are “bigger” teams when looking at the overall history than Man City, will fight for that second place and the next round. At the same time, Greek champions Olympiacos hopes for a miracle to finish third and reaches the Europa League.
The Dragons lost a lot with Fabio Silva’s departure. The teenager who was supposed to be their playmaker left, and to make it even worse, Danilo Pereira jumped to PSG and Alex Telles to Man Utd at the finish of the transfer window. The most prominent signing, Evanilson, is an enigma, and we’ll see how he handles the new environment.
Unlike previous years, Porto heads into the campaign with several experienced players who will be crucial for their performances. Jesus Corona, Felipe Anderson, Moussa Marega, all these guys are in their prime. Several younger guys will serve as backups, but expect to see some of them becoming top-class players at the end of the year.
As usual, the Dragons play 4-3-3 but aren’t that keen on pressuring the rivals in the moments when having the lead, so don’t expect from them to provide high-efficient matches often enough.
This is the easiest part of the entire preview for us. What can we tell you about the Citizens that you already don’t know? They’ve suffered another blow last year, they will be extremely motivated to erase that setback, and they started the year badly. Of all the things said, the last one is the most important.
It seems that Guardiola finally learned the lesson and that he won’t burn his players in the first part of the campaign, but keep them fresh for the finish. He intended that last season, but the COVID-19 pandemic interrupted his plans.
The French representatives look as a mixture of experience and youth, and when looking at the previous year, they didn’t touch the roster at all. A few signings here and there, but nothing special.
In the moments of writing this article, they are posting subpar performances, way below the level of expected, and seem a bit pale for one Champions League member. If they continue to play like this, that second place would be just a dream.
Veteran Dimitri Payet and Florian Thauvin are the two stars of this team.
Last year the Greeks had a solid run in Europe, winning third place in their UCL group and continuing the adventure in the Europa League. They would eliminate Arsenal in London, before suffering an elimination against the Wolves after.
The team has several players who didn’t make it in the big clubs, such as Ruben Semedo, Yann M’Villa, Youssef El Arabi etc. If there were spectators at their stadium in Athens, that would be a problem, but in these circumstances, Oly is far below these sides. Although, they could beat Marseille if they continue to play as they do now.
City is safe in the first place, and the same could be said for Porto, who shouldn’t feel threatened with Marseille. They have more experience and a better roster, and they will beat Olympiacos on both occasions, which isn’t certain for the French side, who could lose some points there.
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.