Manchester City suffer travel blow as UEFA move their Champions League second leg with Borussia Monchengladbach to Budapest in late U-turn after initially confirming it would take place at the Etihad
- Manchester City will now face Borussia Monchengladbach at the Puskas Arena
- UEFA initially confirmed the last-16 second leg tie could take place at the Etihad
- However, they have decided to move it due to coronavirus travel restrictions
- It means City must make a 2,000-mile round-trip four days before an FA Cup trip
UEFA have made a dramatic U-turn by switching Manchester City’s Champions League last-16 second leg match with Borussia Monchengladbach to the Puskas Arena in Budapest.
City had hoped to avoid travel disruption by hosting Monchengladbach for the second leg at the Etihad after UEFA had confirmed the match could be held in Manchester.
Coronavirus travel restrictions between Germany and the United Kingdom saw last month’s first leg — which City won 2-0 — played in Budapest.
Manchester City suffer travel blow as their Champions League tie is moved to Budapest
Manchester City are in the middle of a hectic schedule both domestically and in Europe
Both clubs and the UEFA announced earlier this month that the return fixture could take place at the Etihad after holding talks with Monchengladbach’s local authority in North Rhine-Westphalia.
However, UEFA have now said in a statement that the match has been moved to the Puskas Arena, which staged their first-leg match.
‘UEFA is able to officially confirm that the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 second leg match between Manchester City FC and Borussia VfL 1900 Mönchengladbach will now be played at the Puskás Aréna in Budapest,’ they said in a statement.
‘The date of the match (16 March 2021) and the kick-off time (21:00CET) will remain the same.
City played the first leg against Borussia Monchengladbach at the Puskas Arena last month
Goals from Bernardo Silva and Gabriel Jesus (pictured) gave them a 2-0 victory in the first leg
‘UEFA would like to thank Manchester City FC and Borussia VfL 1900 Mönchengladbach for their support and close cooperation, as well as the Hungarian Football Federation for their assistance and agreeing to stage the match.’
The news will come as a blow for Pep Guardiola, whose side are still in four competitions and in the midst of a hectic schedule.
City are at Everton for an FA Cup quarter-final four days after the Champions League second leg and the 2,000-mile round-trip to Budapest will bring unwanted disruption to Guardiola’s plans.
The Spaniard will be hoping his side can bounce back from their derby defeat against United at the weekend and seal a place in the quarter-finals of the Champions League as they bid to finally end their wait for European glory.