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Profile: Wednesday’s opponents

Champions League rivals Manchester City

An exciting match awaits the fans when the treble winners meet Manchester City on Wednesday evening. It promises to be both a tough game, and also provide an indication of where Bayern stands among the best in Europe. Manchester City have proved they are formidable opponents, especially on their home turf. takes a close look at Bayern's second Champions League foes.

Founded in 1880 as West Gorton Saint Mark’s, the team changed name in 1887 to Ardwick AFC, and played at Hyde Road. In 1894 the club was re-structured and renamed as ManchesterCity, the club's current name. In 1899 the first big achievement was winning the then first division, with many more trophies to follow.

After the most successful period in the club’s history with three trophies between 1968 and 1970, things started to calm down, as the Blues were relegated to the second tier twice in the 1980s. After the disaster of relegation to the third division in 1998, a big re-structuring took place. With new owners in charge, the club stormed back to the Premier League in 2003, playing their matches ever since in the City of Manchester Stadium (now Etihad Stadium). In September 2009  Sheik Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan purchased all the shares in the club using the vehicle of his company ADUG.

City had to wait 44 years for the magical moment when they were finally crowned English champions again. In a dramatic late showdown, the Blues snatched the trophy with a last-second win against Queens Park Rangers, finishing ahead of local rivals Manchester United. This happened in 2012, their third championship title after 1937 and 1968. Furthermore, they have five FA-Cup victories (most recently in 2011), and one triumph in Europe, the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup in 1970.

One of the most legendary finals in English football was Manchester City's 3-1 win against Birmingham City in 1956. Keeper Bert Trautmann (who died in July 2013) finished the match even though he broke his neck. The German was named England's player of the year in 1956.

The Citizens play their home matches at the Etihad Stadium in east Manchester. Queen Elizabeth II opened the stadium in 2002, when Manchester hosted the Commonwealth games. After the event the Stadium was rebuilt as a football-only stadium. The capacity of the all-seater Arena is 47,405.

Champions League record:
Manchester City's first two Champions League attempts were not successful. In 2011/12 the English club finished third in their group with 10 points, behind Napoli (11) and Bayern (12), and had to play in the Europa League for the rest of the season. One year later, City's campaign in Europe ended abruptly after the group stage, when they finished in fourth place with only three points in a group with Borussia Dortmund, Ajax Amsterdam and Real Madrid. 

Current Situation:
With ten points from six matches, the Blues lie sixth in the Premier League. The Manchester team is having problems away from home, not winning any of their three away games. At home they have been quite successful, beating Newcastle 4-0, Hull City 2-0 and bitter rivals Manchester United 4-1. They also won in the League Cup against Wigan (5-0). Bayern know the midweek encounter will not be easy.

Manuel Pellegrini took over the team this season. The 60-year-old worked in the Spanish Primera División for nine years, for Villarreal, Real Madrid and FC Málaga, before heading to Manchester. With his last club, FC Málaga, Pellegrini reached the quarter finals of the Champions League, where they lost to Borussia Dortmund. In July Pellegrini played Bayern with his team, with City losing 2-1 to Bayern in the final of the Audi Cup 2013. 

Key players:
The Bluessquad is littered with international stars, starting with England keeper Joe Hart and ex-Hamburg defender Vincent Kompany, the captain of the team. With Yaya Touré as holding midfielder, Samir Nasri and Jesús Navas operate out on the wings. Sergio Agüero plays a crucial role in the centre of midfield, with Edin Dzeko and Álvaro Negredo fighting for the role as lone striker.

Ex-Bayern player Martin Demichelis joined the Mancunians at the start of the season, but will not feature in the match against his former club, as the Argentine defender is out injured. The other player meeting his old club is Jérôme Boateng, who played 16 times for Manchester City in 2010/11.

Pellegrini usually plays with a 4-2-3-1 formation. The formation has been successful, apart from a shock 3-2 defeat to Cardiff City. A change of formation failed to bring a change in fortunes. Last weekend City lost 3-2 to Aston Villa, this time deploying a 4-4-2 formation.