Champions League: Looking ahead to Kyiv
- 16 February 2016 11:50
- Posted by @timoscroft
City are back in Champions League action on Wednesday 24 February with the first leg of the last 16 tie with Dynamo Kyiv.
Minds have been focused on domestic matters since that magical night under the lights at Etihad Stadium on 8 December, when a 4-2 win over Borussia Monchengladbach secured first place in Group D for the Blues.
So here’s a quick refresher on how we got here, how our opponents got here, what to expect and what happened the last time the two clubs met…
Kick-off: 19:45 GMT
Stadium: NSC Olimpiyskiy, Kyiv
Broadcast info: The game will be broadcast in the UK on BT Sport Europe. For global TV listings, visit livesoccertv.com.
City break new ground and win group
Defeat at home to Juventus in the opening match of this season’s competition put City onto the back foot, but three consecutive wins – away to Monchengladbach and back-to-back victories over Sevilla – saw City qualify for the knockout stages with two games to spare.
But securing top spot was still the aim and within reach despite a narrow 1-0 loss to Juventus in Turin on matchday five.
The chances of topping a Champions League group for the first time looked bleak at 1-2 down to the German side with less than 15 minutes left. But an exhilarating spell of three goals in six minutes from Raheem Sterling (twice) and Wilfried Bony put the Blues into the hat for the last 16 as one of the top-seeded sides.
Dynamo edge through
The Ukrainian champions scraped into the next round as runners-up in Group G behind winners Chelsea courtesy of a 1-0 win over Maccabi Tel-Aviv in their final fixture.
Playing behind closed doors in their Olympic Stadium, Kyiv’s only goal came about when former City defender Tal Ben Haim diverted a free kick towards his own goal. Goalkeeper Predrag Rajkovic kept the ball out but Denys Harmash tapped in from close range, the win edging out Porto into third place.
City’s visit to Kyiv was also due to be played behind closed doors but a ban on fans attending was lifted by UEFA earlier this month.
It’s the second time City have faced Dynamo Kyiv in Europe. The two clubs were drawn together in the Europa League last 16 in 2011, but the Blues’ European adventure for that season came to an end with a 1-2 aggregate defeat over two legs.
Goals from Andrei Shevchenko and Oleg Gusev in the Valeriy Lobanovskyi Stadium gave Roberto Mancini’s side a tough task for the home leg, one made even harder when Mario Balotelli was sent off after 36 minutes.
Aleks Kolarov gave hope with a goal shortly afterwards but despite a valiant effort with 10 men, the Blues were out.
It’s a knockout
With the tie played over two legs, away goals will come in to play. If the tie is level after 90 minutes of the second leg, extra time will be played. If it is still all square after extra time, or if neither side has an advantage on away goals, then the tie will be decided by a penalty shoot-out.