Pep Guardiola ‘s side will face Real Madrid at the Etihad on Friday in the last-16 tie, having defeated the Spanish giants 2-1 in the March first leg.

Former Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has named Manchester City as one of his two picks for this year’s Champions League.

Pep Guardiola ‘s side will face Real Madrid at the Etihad on Friday in the last-16 tie, having defeated the Spanish giants 2-1 in the March first leg.

When City progresses past Madrid on Friday, they’ll travel to Lisbon for an eight-team knockout tournament. The quarter-final and semi-final ties are scheduled to be played over one leg ahead of the final on Sunday 23 August.

The city has never won the Champions League and the club’s hierarchy has made no secret of their desperation to pick up the world’s greatest football club award. And Wenger, who now oversees FIFA’s football creation, has selected Guardiola ‘s side and Paris Saint-Germain for this year’s award as his front runners.

“Nothing will happen when you play a match against Atalanta or the Madrid Atletico,” he told Europe 1.

“But for me, the two favorites in terms of their potential are Manchester City and PSG.”

Wenger added on PSG’s chances: “I believe they ‘re a little less strong than they were three to four years ago. They may have been a little more full in all roles three or four years ago in terms of their holistic setup. And the rivalry was even higher, but I think that there has been a general decrease in the standard of European football at the very, very, very highest level and they are only among the two or three best in Europe. We shouldn’t look for bogus excuses why PSG hasn’t yet won the Champions League. Only Real Madrid often didn’t win it in 10 to 15 years, but they won it three times in a row.”

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