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Previews: All you need to know about tonight's European ties

Manchester City are at home to Porto at 5pm and there are two Champions League last 16 first legs later this evening.

Balotelli challenges Joao Moutinho during the first leg.
Balotelli challenges Joao Moutinho during the first leg.
Image: Paulo Duarte/AP/Press Association Images

Europa League, Round of 32

Manchester City (2) v Porto (1), 5pm, ESPN & Setanta

Current Europa League champions Porto head to the Etihad Stadium knowing they need a win if they are to have any hope of remaining in the competition.

City took a 2-1 advantage away from Portugal last week thanks to Sergio Aguero’s late strike and have an excellent record at home, meaning Vitor Pereira’s side, who haven’t won a game in 15 visits to England, face an enormous challenge.

“Our biggest strength will be our collective play. I do not believe in magic touches, nor in pulling rabbits out of hats,” Pereira said on Eurosport.

“We will try to have the ball to create chances and also defend the way we normally do, with aggressive transitions. It is by being consistent throughout the match that we want to win the tie.”

Roberto Mancini has no new injury worries this evening. Yaya Toure returned to the team in the first leg as did Mario Balotelli, but Carlos Tevez, who apologised to the club today, and Owen Hargreaves are not registered to play in this competition.

Manchester City 8/13 Draw 14/5 Porto 9/2

Champions League, Last 16

Marseille v Inter Milan, 7.45pm, ITV1 & Setanta

Two sides with dramatically different fortunes domestically meet in the Velodrome this evening.

Marseille are currently third behind Paris Saint-Germain and Montpellier in Ligue Un and have strung together a run of 14 games without defeat in all competitions, which stretches back to November.

Italian giants Internazionale, meanwhile, lie 24 points adrift of their Milan rivals, who top Serie A. Claudio Ranieri’s team have been beaten by Bologna, Novara, Lecce and Napoli in recent weeks and worringly have only scored in one of their last six games.

Diego Forlan has just a single goal to his name in 11 appearances since joining from Atletico Madrid last year but is eager to add a couple more tonight.

This competition is the most important in the world and I’m looking forward to playing in it again,” the former Manchester United and Villarreal striker, who missed the group stages, told UEFA.com.

The Uruguayan international faces a battle to retain his starting spot however, as Diego Milito has recovered after missing the 3-0 defeat to Bologna last Friday with the flu.

Dejan Stankovic has done the same while Walter Samuel is back from being sidelined with a thigh strain.

For the home side, French frontman Loic Remy, who has 16 goals this season, is the most notable absentee and his Brazilian team-mate Brandao could start in attack.

Former Liverpool youngster Alou Diarra is a doubt after picking up a knock last weekend and Stephane Mbia is also touch and go.

Marseille 10/11 Draw 9/4 Inter Milan 10/3

FC Basel v Bayern Munich, 7.45pm, RTE 2 & Sky Sports 2

Bayern Munich are in Swtizerland for their first leg tie with FC Basel.

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Basel manager Heiko Vogel pulled off a major shock by knocking Manchester United out of the group stages and the 36-year-old, who managed youth teams at Bayern for nine years, has praised this side for reaching the knockout stages.

“It’s special that there is Swiss involvement in the last 16, the fact I started my training career with Bayern makes it even more interesting,” Vogel said on Eurosport.

“We have a small chance and we want to take it as we did against Manchester (United).”

Their brightest star is playmaker Xherdan Shaqiri, who is a young man tipped for big things in the game. The 22-year-old has agreed to join tonight’s opponents in a €12m deal this summer but insists he won’t have split loyalties.

Munich topped a tough group to progress and are unbeaten against Swiss opposition in Europe. They will be without Bastian Schweinsteiger as the midfielder has suffered ankle ligament damage, while Diego Contento, Breno and Daniel van Buyten are absent at the back.

Basel, meanwhile, have Scott Chipperfield and Philip Degen sidelined.

Basel 5/1 Draw 11/4 Bayern Munich 8/13

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Ben Blake

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