Man City boss Pep Guardiola facing Raheem Sterling dilemma ahead of Real Madrid tie

Pep Guardiola, manager of Manchester City speaks to the media during a press conference at Manchester City Football Academy on February 21, 2020 in Manchester, England.

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola is facing a huge selection dilemma over Raheem Sterling ahead of Wednesday's crunch showdown with Real Madrid.

Sterling is fit and available again after missing the last three weeks with a damaged hamstring.

The England ace has recovered ahead of schedule to provide Guardiola with a huge boost ahead of the crucial Champions League, last 16 clash in the Bernabeu.

The 25-year-old has trained with the rest of his team mates for the past few days and is expected to be named in the travelling squad.

But Guardiola is wrestling with the decision of whether or not to start with Sterling against Zinedine Zidane's La Liga giants.

Sterling has missed City's last two games and in his absence the English champions have secured back-to-back wins, with the likes of Riyad Mahrez and Bernardo Silva showing impressive form.

Sterling's form before getting injured was poor, with the winger going eight games without a goal and Guardiola must now decide if he is willing to risk him for a game that could go on to define the side's European campaign.

City are still reeling from the two-year ban imposed on them by UEFA for serious breaches of FFP rules - and unless the punishment is overturned on appeal, this could be the club's last chance to conquer Europe until 2023.

The explosive showdown has been dubbed the tie of the round, but Real legend Karim Benzema admits the outcome is too close to call over two legs.

Real have won the Champions League in four of the last six seasons, but Benzema knows it won't be easy against City and is expecting a huge scrap.

The French international, who will be making his 100th appearance in the competition, insists Real will be more motivated than ever.

He said: "What I can say about City is that they're a good team with a very good coach.

"They're a team that play with the ball, who aren't scared to make lots and lots of passes. It's going to be an even game.

"In Madrid, we have in our minds at the start of the season trying to win everything. It's not even trying, you have to win everything. 

Afterwards, you have to be lucky. You have to be good at the right time.

"To have this motivation that makes you look even higher. This year, we want to do something good, whether in La Liga or in the Champions League."
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