The king is dead, long live the king – or at least that’s what Manchester City will be hoping when they line up with Edin Dzeko as the spearhead of their attack against AS Roma at the Stadio Olimpico – with the striker drafted in to replace the injured Sergio Aguero.
And despite the 28-year-old’s recent absence through injury, there is room for optimism when it comes to backing the Bosnian to find the net first here.
After all, the former Wolfsburg man has something approaching form for scoring the opener in games played away from home in the Champions League.
Four of the last five goals Dzeko has scored in European Cup games played on the road have been the first in their respective encounters while the two goals the striker has scored in a stop-start season in the Premier League so far have come in fixtures away from the Etihad.
And as goals scored away from home in crucial wins over Manchester United, Newcastle and Tottenham among others last season showed, when it comes to scoring big goals in big games, the Bosnian is your man.
All of which makes the news that Ladbrokes have boosted the 28-year-old from 11/2 to 7/1 to score first against AS Roma this Wednesday all the more enticing a prospect.
The Giallorossi conceded first against Sassuolo at the weekend, going 2-0 behind before rallying to snatch a late draw.
A similar result is unlikely to do Manchester City many favours but with Roma proving sluggish out of the blocks on Saturday, an early goal for Dzeko could yet be on the cards.
Score that and the Bosnian may kick-start not only his own season but that of the reigning Premier League champions in Europe.
And with Aguero set to be out for at least a month, it could prove to be perfect timing for all concerned.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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