Man City vs. RB Leipzig prediction

Manchester City has shown more cracks in its armor than usual this season but that hasn’t changed the fact that the Cityzens are the consensus favorite to win the UEFA Champions League. City is sitting at +180 to lift the trophy ahead of its two-leg encounter with RB Leipzig. 

As you’d expect, City is a big favorite to get through Leipzig. The Sky Blues are -650 to qualify for the quarterfinals and -110 to win the first leg on Wednesday afternoon. 

Is that too much respect for Pep Guardiola’s side?

Manchester City vs. RB Leipzig pick

RB Leipzig +330 (PointsBet)

It’s been a funky season for Man City in 2022-23. On one hand, City’s statistical profile and the fact that they’re the betting favorites to win the toughest league in the world means they are pretty clearly the best team on the planet. But if you just go by their results, City has actually been kind of underwhelming.

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City has played 24 matches in the Premier League this season and has won “just” 16 of them to go along with four draws. The Cityzens have lost to Brentford and drawn against Everton, Nottingham Forest and Aston Villa. Those wonky results have spilled over into tournament football, too, as City were held to a 0-0 draw to FC Copenhagen and were eliminated from the EFL Cup by Southampton.

A lot of these results were down to poor luck — for instance City dominated Forest last weekend but just couldn’t finish — but we’re not dealing with just one or two weird performances, but more than 10. 

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And what’s even more encouraging for underdog backers on Wednesday is that Leipzig is miles better than Everton, Forest, Villa and Copenhagen. Die Roten Bullen are in fifth place in the Bundesliga, but they’re only four points off the top of the table and boast the second-best goal difference and expected goal difference. 

City’s attack is the best in all of Europe and the presence of Erling Haaland is certainly scary, but Leipzig’s defensive numbers are quite encouraging. The Red Bulls have allowed just five goals on 5.1 xG in their last six matches and their 22.5 xG conceded is the third-best mark in the Bundesliga and the 12th-best in Europe’s big five leagues. This is a defense you can depend on in most situations.

Not only does a bet on Leipzig to pull the upset make sense, but it also wouldn’t hurt to take a punt on the Red Bulls to win the entire competition at 100/1. 

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