Manchester City vs Inter Milan. Prediction and Preview. Probable Lineups, Team News, Stats and more

The showdown of the European giants: Man City will battle it out against Inter

Manchester City will meet with FC Internazionale Milano in the UEFA Champions League final match at Atatürk Olympic Stadium in Istanbul. The fixture will take place on Sunday, June 11, beginning at 00:30 IST.

The Italian representatives have already lost in two Eurocup finals so far, and the monster Manchester City will take on Inter in the third. Will there be a hat-trick of mishaps? Pep Guardiola has rocked City to the maximum, cooking up something that is challenging to do even in the FIFA series. Those frantic lads already conquered the EPL and the FA Cup. Now it’s up to the most prestigious European tournament.

What can we expect this Sunday night? Parimatch News will tell you everything you need to know before the upcoming match.

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Manchester City News & Current Form:

The Champions League final is the most anticipated game of the football season. This time, however, the play-off nets are unequal and an early final has already taken place. Manchester City made it to the bottom of the grid, with the most prestigious clubs in Europe and Guardiola’s side having to navigate through them on their way to the final. Many thought that the Citizens would traditionally lack character and spirit, but this time it was different.

Man City’s path to the Champions League final was steady, without a defeat in all 12 matches. In the group stage, the Citizens dominated Group G. In the matches against Borussia Dortmund, Sevilla FC, who then won the UEFA Europa League and FC Copenhagen, they won 4 times and drew twice against their opponents. In the 1/8 finals, Guardiola’s men got past RB Leipzig (1 – 1, 7 – 0). But the quarter-final and semi-final series were a rehearsal for the final.

Manchester City got their first early final in the quarter-finals, where they encountered FC Bayern Munich. The Munich side were still a formidable force at the time but were beaten 0 – 3 in Manchester. On the road, Guardiola’s side simply finished the job, 1 – 1. 

Next up, Haaland and company were drawn against Real Madrid CF. Everyone knows how this team can play in the Champions League and how Carlo Ancelotti can set up and change the course of the decisive matches. But the most tournament-winning club in the history of the competition was stopped on their way to another trophy in the semi-finals. The semi-final followed the same scenario, but the English reversed the matches. First 1 – 1 away, and then the humiliation of an opponent at the Etihad, Real received a deafening 0 – 4.

Manchester City are just one step away from fulfilling a cherished dream of fans and bosses, with the Arabs investing hundreds of millions of euros for their biggest success in 15 years. And the Citizens are on their way to the Champions League final for the second time and are again aiming for a treble: they won the Emirates FA Cup and English Premier League in 2021 but lost to Chelsea FC in the final. This time, it is impossible to stumble.

Pep, for example, cannot make the mistakes he made two years ago – the Spaniard admitted long ago to inaccuracies with the line-up for that match.

“It was the same plan for the game as for next Saturday. If I explain to you privately the reason why I made that decision at that moment, you might say that it was justified. But it’s simple: if I lose I’m wrong, if I win I’m right. In football, you have to accept that,”

Guardiola said.

Afterwards, he uttered another piece of wisdom: 

“We have to accept that if we want to take a decisive step as a big club, we have to win in the European competitions.”

The Spaniard will be helped to make the treble by the best trio this season: Ilkay Gundogan, Kevin de Bruyne and Erling Haaland. The Norwegian has scored an insane 36 goals in 35 EPL games and added 16 more: one in the English Football League Cup, three in the FA Cup and 12 in the UCL. That said, Erling has yet to shine in the decisive matches, but is aware that he is the reason City should take the European trophy – what else was he bought for?

Manchester City celebrating victory in the Emirates FA Cup final against Manchester United

De Bruyne has worked magic throughout the season: giving away, edging out, assisting and scoring incredible goals. But at times he was lost, Gündogan came to the rescue in those moments. The Turkish midfielder took charge in midfield and pulled the strings brilliantly during attacks.

Ilkay has been on the mend in recent matches, producing a number of performances, one of which earned City a 2 – 1 win over Manchester United  FC in the FA Cup final. It would be a pity if he changes clubs in the summer and moves to a notional FC Barcelona – that is where he has been rumoured to be heading in recent weeks.

After the early championship in England, Manchester City relaxed a bit and gave rest to their key players. As a result, the Citizens scored only 1 point in the final 3 rounds of the EPL. It is worth noting that City have lost only once in almost four months, and that fiasco came in the last round at the hands of Brentford FC (0 – 1).

The summer transfer window is just around the corner and it is reported that Manchester City have agreed terms with Chelsea midfielder Mateo Kovacic. Mateo himself is keen to join the Citizens. It is reported that the Aristocrats are ready to release the midfielder, but negotiations between the clubs will take place after the Champions League final. The 29-year-old Kovačić has featured for Chelsea in 37 games this season, scoring two goals and assisting two times.

Bernardo Silva shared that this season was difficult for his team, being behind Arsenal FC for most of the season:

“The main message that he passes to us in these matches, not only against Real Madrid, but in this match against Real Madrid, because we’re in a semi-final of the Champions League, and because last year we had a match with them where they knocked us out in a strange way.”

“It was tough for us to accept it, so we have to understand that we can lose because we’re playing against one of the best teams in the world, but we have to reach the end of the tie and have no regrets. “

“We have to reach the end of the tie with no regrets, knowing that we did everything we could possibly do to have the best chance to reach the final. We have to be yourselves, have ball possession, apply high pressure, control the match, and create more chances to score.”

“This has been a difficult season, because 90% of the season, to start with, we were always behind Arsenal and we couldn’t win four or five matches in a row. So we couldn’t get that momentum of confidence, of thinking: okay, now we’re unstoppable. Because, when you start winning five, six, seven matches in a row, you get that feeling that you’re unstoppable. And it’s difficult to stop a team when they have this feeling.”

“Any team, not just us. And this past year, it was always like, one, two, three matches and then we’d draw or lose. That ended up creating a feeling of lack of confidence within the team.

“And I think, especially after the World Cup, there was a moment of reflection, and even after coming back at first, those first games weren’t easy, but the away win over Arsenal was very important.

“It made us believe again that we can win important matches. And in the moment that we won over Arsenal at home, it was approximately at the same time when we knocked out Bayern Munich from the Champions League, it ended up being a very important moment.”

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Inter Milan News & Current Form: 

Inter made it to the Champions League winner-decider match unexpectedly for many. In the group stage, they emerged from a tricky quartet in the company of Bayern and Barcelona.

In the playoffs, the Milan side faced far more modest opponents than their upcoming opponent. In the 1/8, they narrowly defeated FC Porto, scoring just one goal in two games (1 – 0, 0 – 0), then defeated another Portuguese side, SL Benfica (2 – 0, 3 – 3), in a similar fashion before winning the Milan derby twice in the semi-finals (2 – 0, 1 – 0). 

Lautaro Martinez and Edin Dzeko were just hyped up for the games against AC Milan, while the Rossoneri were in deep crisis. It cannot be said that Inter were lucky to be in the Champions League final, Inzaghi’s team are decent anyway, but the road to the play-offs was an easy one – no top-flight rivals.

It cannot be overlooked that, on the way to their second Champions League final in the 21st century and sixth all-time, Inter were exemplary defensively, with as many as eight games without conceding a goal, the best figure in the current competition.

Inter have a far more prestigious European Cup history than their rivals, having lifted the UCL silverware three times in their history. The last time that happened was in 2010, when a team coached by José Mourinho secured a historic treble (Serie A, Italian Cup, Champions League). 

The Nerazzurri’s opponents will be Manchester City. Josep Guardiola’s side are widely regarded as the clear favorites to win the upcoming game. But Inter have one advantage that few talk about – their coach.

Simone ended his career in 2010 and immediately took up coaching. With Simone, SS Lazio returned to the Champions League group stage for the first time in 12 years and also played in three cup finals. And all of them ended in Lazio’s favor.

Inter Milan players celebrating victory in the Italian Cup over ACF Fiorentina

In the Supercoppa Primavera final in 2017, the Eagles outscored Juventus FC 3 – 2 in a result-oriented match. Two years later, the Super Cup affair was repeated and Lazio were stronger again, 3 – 1. And in the Italian Cup final 2018/2019, the Romans beat Atalanta BC 2 – 0. In total: Inzaghi’s nine cup finals with Lazio resulted in nine victories. 

In 2021, Simone left for promotion. Inter Milan called on Inzaghi to replace Antonio Conte. And the new coach took the Italian Supercup for the club straight away. Inter defeated Juventus 2 – 1 in extra time in January 2022. 

Let’s recap the cup finals for Inzaghi. Inter won 21 cup matches out of 32 under his leadership. This win percentage (65%) is higher than that of the team in Serie A (63%) and even higher than that of Guardiola with City in the Champions League (63.5%).

The Nerazzurri won the Serie A bronze medals on the domestic scene, but they were not satisfied with that either, sending the Italian Cup to the club’s museum at the end of last month. They played their last official meeting last weekend, too, narrowly beating a resilient Torino FC 1 – 0 away on the final matchday of the championship.

The Italians’ performance looked promising ahead of the final of the prestigious European competition. The Nerazzurri have won 11 of their last 12 matches, 29-9 on aggregate, and their attacking group is the most potent.

It should not be forgotten that Inter have been honing their playmaking skills in the transition phases all season and Manchester City will have to reckon with that. After all, it is a style that is not comfortable for the Citizens, as evidenced by their two defeats to Brentford in the EPL.

Simone Inzaghi’s men already have one trophy to their name this season. They managed to win the Coppa Italia, beating ACF Fiorentina 2 – 1 in the decider.

What could hamper Inter are injuries, as they have problems with their attack. Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Joaquin Correa are still in the team’s infirmary and their availability is questionable.

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Manchester City form guide: W-W-W-D-L-W

Inter Milan form guide: W-W-L-W-W-W

Manchester City vs Inter Milan Head-To-Head Record: 

Manchester CityDrawInter Milan
  • August 1, 2010: Inter Milan 3 – 0 Manchester City (Club Friendlies);
  • July 31, 2011: Manchester City 3 – 0 Inter Milan (Dublin Super Cup).

Manchester City vs Inter Milan Predicted XI:

Manchester City possible starting lineup (3-2-4-1): Ederson; Walker, Dias, Akanji; Stones, Rodri; Silva, Gundogan, De Bruyne, Grealish; Haaland.

Inter Milan possible starting lineup (3-5-2): Onana; Darmian, Acerbi, Bastoni; Dumfries, Barella, Mkhitaryan, Calhanoglu, Dimarco; Martinez, Dzeko.

Statistical preview of the match Manchester City vs Inter Milan:

  • City’s First XI average age is 28.9 yrs.
  • Inter’s First XI average age is 29.3 yrs.
  • Inter are victorious in their last 3 matches.
  • Manchester City are unbeaten in 26 of their last 28 matches.
  • In the last 5 games Inter conceded on average 1.20 goals per game and scored on average 1.60 goals per game.
  • In the last 5 games Manchester City are conceding an average of 0.60 goals per game and scoring an average of 1.60 goals per game.
  • Manchester City have scored at least three goals in their last five matches won in UCL.
  • In the current Champions League, City have never conceded more than one goal.
  • Top scorers of Manchester City – Erling Haaland (52+9), Julian Alvarez  (17+4), Riyad Mahrez (15+13).
  • Top scorers of Inter Milan – Lautaro Martinez (24+9), Romelu Lukaku (13+7), Edin Dzeko (13+4).

What has been said before the match:

The coach of Manchester City Pep Guardiola is determined to secure a treble this season:

“It’s a dream to be here. It’s really good, dreaming of the game and travelling to Istanbul together. Two years ago in 2021, we were here but in a different situation because of COVID. We will do our best.”

“A final is how you behave that specific 95 minutes, not about history. We have to be better than the opponent – it doesn’t matter about the group stage, the FA Cup, the Premier League. We have to be better in this game.”

“A few days ago we won the FA Cup. At that time (2021) we arrived having lost to Chelsea before and we had some doubts about what we should do. It’s not the same but both teams play five at the back. Chelsea was defensive too. But they had good patterns to punish us. I would not say it is similar, but some things are.”

“Hopefully we can attack a little bit better than we did at that time. We want to finish differently this time. But we have to know exactly what we have to do to beat this opponent in terms of approach, with and without the ball we have to be focused.”

“In that time when we played the final, we had a good season in the Premier League. It’s quite similar to now, not much different. It’s difficult to arrive once and win it. It’s important to be there and have this opportunity and we want to take it.”

Simone Inzaghi, boss of Inter Milan, ahead of the Champions League final:

“We’ve been calm because we’ve had so many big games before Saturday. We had the Coppa Italia final as well as a Champions League place to seal in Serie A.

“Games were coming thick and fast but we could sense this big game coming. We’ll approach the game in the best way possible.”

“I don’t think we’re being underestimated.  We’ve got lots of respect and know that Manchester City are the best team in the world. However, we know that we’ve had a great season and fully deserved to make this final. We’ll give it all we’ve got, knowing that we’re up against the best out there right now.”

Captain of the Citizens Ilkay Gundogan talked about the opponent and the team’s approach to the game:

“Inter didn’t get to the final for nothing. They have great qualities even though it wasn’t enough for them to win their league this year. But they did win the National Cup.”

“They are a team that knows how to win titles. They are very aggressive in their way of playing. Maybe they are more focused on the defensive side but they also have amazing qualities going forward. They are a very stable team.”

“They usually don’t concede too many goals, so it won’t be easy. We know they will probably be happy to let us have the ball, and it will be up to us to make the most of that. We will need to watch out for counter-attacks. We have to be wide awake. Especially in a final, anything can happen. So we have to be fully focused.”

The star player of City Jack Grealish about his dream coming true:

“This is the exact reason that I came to City. To play in a Champions League final and have played such a big part in everything this year in the league and FA Cup too. It’s what you dream of when you’re a youngster growing up and even five or six years ago it was what I was dreaming of. So to go and do it in a final with this group of guys now is a privilege and a dream come true.”

Manchester City vs Inter Milan Prediction:

Who will emerge as the winner? 

Let’s take a look at the following facts: Inter have been in top form since the start of April – 12 wins in 13 games, having dealt with the likes of AC Milan, Juventus, Lazio and Atalanta, as well as beating Fiorentina in the cup final. Secondly, Simone Inzaghi seems to be the ultimate cup coach, it’s all about his track record – with Inter he has won four of Italy’s four cup competitions. Thirdly, let’s look at City’s away stats this season under Pep, when the probability of victory was estimated ~70% (the situation in Istanbul is definitely anything but home for City) — just three wins alongside six draws and four defeats. From this, we can assume that the Black and Blues have a good chance of going into overtime.

Can Inter find the Citizens’ back of the net? 

There is a chance of that as well, and it’s worth taking into account. For the analysis, we take City’s away matches, when the projected chance of losing was estimated as 30% or more (with the FA Cup final against Man Utd taken into account) – in 10 out of 12 of such meetings, the English conceded at least 1 goal (average of 1.08). Inter, on the other hand, played seven games during the whole season, when the possibility of their victory was estimated at ~30% (as it is now) – in five games they managed to score. But also in general, since the confrontation with Benfica in the quarterfinals, Inter have scored an average of 2.27 (they have scored goals in 13 out of 14 meetings). We assume that the Italians will score now as well.

We should also factor in the rather obvious expected pattern of play, namely the initiative of the Skyblues (which translates into a defensive nature of play from Inter, coupled with plenty of corner kicks in their half of the pitch):

Across the tournament, Inter allow an average of five corners against their own 5.25. If we take the whole season and look at the games where Milan have been rated clear underdogs, then, in such games, the Black and Blue have registered an average of 6.8 corners, but their own figure has remained at 5.4.

Manchester City are averaging 6.42 corners in this UCL with their opponents averaging 3.36. Going back to those games where City’s success rate was estimated at ~70% and we see that here Ederson’s goal was having an average of 3.46 corners. Thus, the overall amount of corner kicks is likely to be more than 8.

Also worth mentioning here is the classic hard-fought, brutal nature of the game (which is usually reflected in the number of bookings), so let’s take a look at the figures:

Szymon Marciniak has been relentless in the Champions League, averaging at least four Yellow Cards (4.64 average) in six of his eight games in the tournament. Plus, the Pole tallied at least four yellow cards in all three playoff games. 3.5 is the average UCL total of both City and Inter in the playoffs. The final, the maddening and noisy Istanbul, the uncontrollable emotions – we think the teams will break the bar of three yellow cards on Saturday as well.

Parimatch News staff prediction:

We say: 1) Manchester City will not lose in the regular time – Yes; 2) the individual total of Inter will be over 0.5 –  Yes; 3) the total of yellow cards will be over 3.5 – Yes; 4) the total of corners will be over 8 – Yes.