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CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

Manchester City vs RB Leipzig: who is the referee for the Champions League second-leg tie?

City are still searching for their first Champions League title, while head coach Pep Guardiola hasn’t won the tournament since 2011.

City are still searching for their first Champions League title, while head coach Pep Guardiola hasn’t won the tournament since 2011.
KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEVAFP

Things were looking very rosy for Manchester City at half-time in the first leg of their Champions League round of 16 tie away to RB Leipzig. Pep Guardiola’s men had dominated the first half and looked to be on course to secure an impressive victory after Riyad Mahrez had put them in front just before the half-hour mark. However, the Germans battled back superbly in the second period and came away with what ultimately proved to be a deserved draw thanks to Joško Gvardial’s leveller.

City’s superb Champions League home record

Although Marco Rose will have been very pleased to see his side fight back from a goal down, he’ll be well aware that the odds are stacked in City’s favour for the return leg at the Etihad, where the Premier League champions, one of the favourites to win the Champions League, have won 21 and drawn two of their last 23 fixtures in the competition. “They must be due a defeat”, has to be Leipzig’s thinking.

The Citizens head into the game having won each of their four matches following the draw in Germany, although they remain five points adrift of Premier League leaders Arsenal. Star striker Erling Haaland has netted just twice in his last six games, a poor return by his own very high standards, although Rose, his former boss at Borussia Dortmund, raved about the Norwegian in his pre-match press conference.

Recent domestic defeats costly for RB Leipzig

Leipzig, meanwhile, had high hopes of challenging for the Bundesliga title but have suffered costly defeats to Union Berlin and Dortmund in the space of the last month, which means they now sit seven points behind league leaders Bayern Munich.

Who will referee Manchester City vs RB Leipzig?

Slavko Vincic leads a predominantly Slovenian team of match officials for this Champions League round of 16 second leg match-up. The 43-year-old has previously taken charge of 12 matches in the competition, although the highest-profile game he has been awarded was last year’s Europa League final between Eintracht Frankfurt and Rangers, which the German side won in a penalty shootout. Vincic was also a selected as a match official for Euro 2020, where he was the man in the middle for two group stage games, as well as the quarter-final between Italy and Belgium in Munich.

Vincic will be assisted by Tomaz Klancnik & Andraz Kovacic, with fellow Sloveninan Rade Obrenovic acting as the fourth official. Spaniard Alejandro Hernández, the only non-Slovenian, will head up the VAR team, assisted by Nejc Kajtazovic.