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What do Man City need to do against Sevilla to finish first in their Champions League group?

Guardiola’s team are mathematically through to the Round of 16 but still have a job to do against Sevilla to maintain their unbeaten run.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 01: Kevin de Bruyne of Manchester City in action during a training session ahead of their UEFA Champions League group G match against Sevilla FC at Etihad Stadium on November 01, 2022 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Matt McNulty - Manchester City/Manchester City FC via Getty Images)
Matt McNulty - Manchester CityGetty

Already safely through to the next round, tonight’s game against Sevilla will pretty much be a case of going through the motions for Manchester City. Pep Guardiola’s team are the only team who remain unbeaten in Group G. They top the standings on 11 points and go into the final group game with a three-point advantage over their nearest rivals Borussia Dortmund - both of them will be in Monday’s draw for the Round of 16.

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Mathematically, Dortmund could still pull level on points with City although for that to happen, they would need to pull off a shock result at the Etihad. And even if they did beat City on home turf, it wouldn’t change anything. Under UEFA’s tournament regulations, if two teams end level on points at the end of the group stage, the team with the most points gained from the head-to-head meetings between the two clubs will take precedence - goal difference no longer counts. If two teams have the same number of points and the same goal difference, it is the head-to-head record that counts.

City beat Dortmund in Manchester

In Group G, City’s goal difference is +10 (11 goals scored, one conceded), while Dortmund’s is +5 (nine goals scored, four conceded). But City have the best head-to-head record as they beat Dortmund 2-1 at the Etihad on Matchday 2 and last month’s return fixture in Germany ended in a 0-0 draw. So in terms of points accrued from both games, home and away, City have four points to Dortmund’s one.

In any case, it would have be almost impossible for Dortmund to get a result against Copenhagen that would have brought them level pegging with City on goal difference. So Group G will end just as it is now - Guardiola’s men will finish as champions of the group, Dortmund second, Sevilla will end in third and go into the Europa League and Copenhagen, in fourth and still without a win, will bow out.


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