After spending the opening weekend of the 2018/2019 English Premier League season on the road, Manchester City is set to play their first home game the season this weekend.
The Citizens are scheduled to welcome Huddersfield Town on Sunday afternoon, with the prospect of a second successive win on the cards for Pep Guardiola as the Spaniard looks to successfully defend the title.
Despite having a three-month off season spell that saw most of his charges take part in the FIFA World Cup in Russia, Manchester City didn’t seem to have missed a beat, as they swiftly picked up matters with a well deserved 2-0 win over Arsenal last weekend.
It was Arsenal’s first competitive match without Arsene Wenger who parted ways with the club at the end of last season having served as manager since 1996; subsequently making way for Unai Emery who moved to the Emirates after the end of his two-year contract with French giants Paris Saint-Germain.
The Gunners demonstrated multiple flaws and fragilities in an attempted to conform to their new manager’s style of play that was heavily centered on playing out from the back; something their opponents of the day exceeded and excelled in.
The hosts made a bright start as they showed great attacking intent within the opening minutes, but were soon handed a reality check after going behind to a Raheem Sterling goal in the 14th minute. The England international- who began the day on the left wing- justified being selected ahead of Leroy Sane, as he beat Hector Bellerin and Matteo Guendouzi before blasting a 20-yard shot past Petr Cech to score what was his landmark 50th goal in the Premier League.
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The difference in quality and experience was quite apparent, as City continued to push for a second goal even though Arsenal didn’t threaten much. They eventually got rewarded with a much earned breathing space right after the hour mark when Bernando Silva met Benjamin Mendy’s cutback to set up a healthy two-goal lead.
The Gunners were kept ominously quiet on home turf, with the stuttering start heavily denting their title hopes- if any. It would however be unfair to judge Unai on the account of his first match, as it came against the most fluid and expensively assembled team on the land.
Huddersfield Town didn’t have a particularly memorable outing on their first day either, as they fell to a 3-0 defeat at the hands of Chelsea at the John Smith’s Stadium. The Blues, under the tutelage of newly appointed Maurizio Sarri, opened their goal scoring account of the season through N’Golo Kante’s strike in the 34th minute, before doubling the advantage from a spot kick converted by Jorginho right at the stroke of half time.
Pedro added a third goal ten minutes from stoppage time to put a gloss on the final score, by and by handing David Wagner a defeat in his first match of the season.
David Silva could be available for selection this weekend after missing the win over Arsenal due to a slight knock. Guardiola however has long term absentees in: Danilo who picked up an ankle injury while with Brazil at the World Cup, Philippe Sandler who was down with a knee injury before joining the club in the English summer and Equalim Mangala who picked up a knee injury last season.
The Terriers on the other hand have plenty of options seeing as they have a full strength side.
Manchester City vs. Huddersfield Match Prediction
The Etihad Stadium may have been a fortress in the Premier League last season as the Citizens amassed an astounding 50 points at home on course to winning the title, but the only side they failed to score against at the ground was Huddersfield Town.
It could be argued that City had plenty by way of excitement as the match was played on the day they received the Premier League trophy, but David Wagner has already proven he can tame Pep Guardiola in more than one occasion.
The champions will however not be frustrated in this particular instance, with the full knowledge that Liverpool is out to abdicate them from their throne.
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Man City vs. Huddersfield Town recent results
Man City 0-0 Huddersfield (May 6, 2018)
Huddersfield 1-2 Man City (November 26, 2017)
Nicolas Otamendi 45+1′ (OG)
Sergio Aguero 47′ (P)
Raheem Sterling 84′
Man City 5-1 Huddersfield (March 1, 2017)
Leroy Sane 30′
Sergio Aguero 35′ (P), 73′
Pablo Zabaleta 38′
Kelechi Iheanacho 90+1′
Harry Bunn 7′
Huddersfield 0-0 Man City (February 18, 2017)
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