Schalke is struggling in the Bundesliga and will welcome the distraction of a Champions League clash, even if it's against high-flying and quadruple-chasing Manchester City.
We've previewed Schalke vs Man City in-depth here and taken some bets on betPawa!
The only previous meetings between these sides was 11 years ago and ended 2-0 to Man City. The Premier League champions are still fighting on four fronts for silverware this season and gathering momentum at exactly the right time. Schalke is languishing in 14th position in the Bundesliga and they've only won three of their last nine matches across all competitions.
In terms of team news, Schalke could give a start to Wales defender Rabbi Matondo, who signed from City for £9.6m in the January window. The teenager failed to make a first-team appearance at City with too many senior defenders ahead of him in the pecking order but has played three times for the German side so far. Another former City defender Matija Nastasic will also be relishing a reunion with his old club.
Germany international winger Leroy Sane could face his old side, having joined City from Schalke for £37m in 2016. The visitors will be without defender John Stones, who has a groin problem and forward Gabriel Jesus, who's nursing a hamstring injury.
Guardiola daring to dream
Pep Guardiola says Manchester City have "many dreams in our heads" ahead of their Champions League knockout-stage match against Schalke. City has never won the competition but is one of the major contenders to lift the title this season.
"It is a special competition, we have to control our emotions," said Guardiola. "We are confident and it is important to score away from home." Spaniard Guardiola won the competition twice as Barcelona boss, but the last of those came in 2011. He failed to lift the trophy in his three seasons at Bayern Munich as is now into his third season with City.
Man to watch
Leroy Sane isn't guaranteed a starting place in this Manchester City side, such is the wealth of options at Pep Guardiola's disposal, but the winger is likely to play at least some part tonight and that could spell danger for his former side. If Sane doesn't start, take your pick from a selection of attacking midfielders that could hurt Schalke, notably David Silva who has three goals for City in the competition this season, his namesake Bernardo and the pivotal now fully-fit figure of Kevin De Bruyne.
Futaa prediction: 0-2
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