Manchester City Forum - Manchester City v Crystal Palace - 3pm Sat 23rd Sept - Premier League Match Preview and MDT
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Manchester City v Crystal Palace - 3pm Sat 23rd Sept - Premier League Match Preview and MDT
21 September 2017 07:43 Post ID: #606727
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Apologies for the early posting but the games are coming thick and fast and I am away for the next few days.

Preview

Pep and his players return to the Etihad this weekend where they will face Crystal Palace.

After racking up 17 goals in those 4 matches across three competitions in 11 days, City will look to build on the momentum against Palace and keep their excellent start to the season on track. Palace on the other hand perhaps may be looking forward to this trip with less anticipation having shipped 5 goals without reply on their last visit to the Etihad in May and suffered defeat at the hands of their opponents in each of the last 6 fixtures against Manchester City. In those previous meetings City have notched up 20 goals and conceded only twice and to make matters worse for the visitors shipped 14 of those goals at the Etihad. Not an enviable record for the away side.

The Eagles may have a new manager in England’s ex-coach Roy Hodgson but they arrive with an unwanted record around their collective necks. Their loss at Selhurst Park to Southampton last weekend was their fifth successive defeat in the league and not only has it left them rooted to the bottom of the league but it also means they are goalless after 450 minutes played - a new Premier League record, surpassing Newcastle United in 2005/06. Far more significantly perhaps, no other team of the 2,464 others since 1888 have ever started a top-flight season with no goals and no points after five games. They managed a win in the League Cup on Tuesday though so may feel a bit brighter for that.

City will be looking to carry on in the league where they left off at Watford last Saturday where they were outstanding. Last time out in this home fixture against Palace the Blues were ahead after only 2 minutes courtesy of a David Silva goal. The same again would do nicely as I have little doubt that Roy Hodgson would consider escaping from this game with a point to be progress and as such I am expecting his men to sit deep and try, frustrate City’s through passing and look for a counter attack or set piece to threaten Ederson’s goal.

This may be a tall order. It has been noticeable that the passes by City’s midfielders ‘punched’ through the defensive lines have caused more problems this season than they did in 2016/17. I strongly suspect that the marauding presence of City’s new full/wing backs Mendy and Walker may have something to do with this. Blessed not only with lightning fast pace they also stretch the pitch, pinning their direct opponents back and causing the whole of the opposing midfield to open just that fraction larger creating the space to be exploited by the pinpoint accuracy of De Bruyne, Fernandinho or Silva. Aguero and Jesus have made the most of this outstanding accuracy - they have made the runs, they have been found by their team mates and have gotten their rewards.

Sergio Aguero will come into this match on the cusp of becoming Manchester City’s highest goal scorer in the history of the club having made 259 appearances for the club, and scoring 175 goals in all competitions…….

Times have changed both in terms of playing surfaces, player fitness, the frequency of games…..…I could go on but in the end it it doesn’t really matter. What history will record is that Sergio requires two more goals to equal the record set by Eric Brook, a record which has stood for 78 years.

Eric played for Manchester City for 11 seasons between 1928-1939 scoring 177 goals in 494 appearances. He was part of the great City side of the 1930s playing in both FA Cup Finals and ever present in the side during the Championship winning season of 1936/37. He made 18 international appearances but was forced to retire in 1940 at the age of 32 having suffered a fractured skull in a car crash. He passed away aged 57 years at home in Wythenshawe in 1965.

He remains a City legend and would, I am sure, be very happy to see his mantle of the club’s record goalscorer be taken over by a player of the consummate skill and talent of Sergio Aguero.

This is the time for Pep and his players to start showing their true potential, time to put the hammer down and be ruthless

Come on City!!!

*Stats courtesy of Transfermarkt.com

Key opponent

Ruben Loftus-Cheek. On loan from Chelsea, Loftus Cheek has racked up some impressive stats including a pass completion rate of over 84%. A dynamic midfielder he will be looking to shine and force his way back into contention for a place in the Chelsea squad.

Match Officials

Referee - Neil Swarbrick
Assistants - Scott Ledger; Andy Garratt
Fourth Official - Tony Harrington

Stats** comparison (Premier League) :-

City

Goals per game - 3
Avg Possesion - 64.3%
Pass Accuracy - 88.2%
Shots per game - 18.6
Discipline - 9Y, 2R

Crystal Palace

Goals per game - 0.2
Avg Possesion - 49.8%
Pass Accuracy - 76.6%
Shots per game - 14.2
Discipline - 14Y, 0R

**Stats courtesy of Whoscored.com

Team News

City may actually have a full squad to select from. I know. I can't quite believe it either.

Palace will be without Conor Wickham who is sidelined with an ACL knee injury but could welcome back U*d reject Zaha. Souare should be fit.

Potential starting XI, subs & formation

Ederson

Walker, Stones, Otamendi, Mendy

De Bruyne, Fernandinho, Silva D

Sterling, G Jesus, Aguero

Subs:-

Bravo, Mangala, Danilo, Toure, Silva B, Sané, Diaz
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21 September 2017 07:50 Post ID: #606728 - in reply to #606727
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Agree with your XI with the possible exception of Sane in for Sterling, Leroy's earned it I reckon.

Glad to see Wickham is out, he always causes us problems.
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21 September 2017 09:35 Post ID: #606742 - in reply to #606727
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I wouldn’t argue with that BD. He has shown what he can do although Sterling seemed to have raise his game last night too :-)

I wrote this before last night’s game and took out the ill-fated Gundogan but left the rest alone
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21 September 2017 09:39 Post ID: #606744 - in reply to #606727
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Yep Sterling has been playing really well too, superb save from Foster to deny him his Sane type goal and another smart stop with his foot to deny him too.

Sterling has started the last two though and we've Europe midweek, give him a rest before that one I say and play Leroy.

Pep probably won't start either of them.
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21 September 2017 09:53 Post ID: #606751 - in reply to #606727
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He does like to keep us on our toes!
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21 September 2017 10:29 Post ID: #606755 - in reply to #606727
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I think Sterling has upped his game, but so have Sané and the latter for me is the better finisher, both are nightmares for the opposition and I prefer Sterling on the right, but neither Raheem or Walker have that good crossing ability, but they will get there.

In terms of selection wow, what a good position to be in at City and in all my years this is arguably the best squad I have witnessed, Mendy could be City best ever Left back since Glyn Pardoe.

Palace should bring two buses and definitely wont be here to bring the game to us or press us, Their New manager Roy will want to sheer things up and a point will be like a win to them and he will be hoping that his team could score on the rare counter-attacks.

Ederson (in a Cap)

Walker Stones Otamendi Mendy

Fernandinho

De Bruyne, Silva, Sané Sterling

Aguero

Berti
Jesus, Bernardo, Mangala, Danilo, Delph, Kompany

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21 September 2017 10:35 Post ID: #606759 - in reply to #606727
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Roy will be desperate to secure a point. After their start getting anything on the board is a must and scoring would be a bonus. I am expecting a double bank of nine outfield player so trying to deny space and a single front man whose job will be to fall mover at the earliest opportunity to relieve pressure.

We need our wide men to stretch the pitch.....again
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21 September 2017 10:36 Post ID: #606760 - in reply to #606727
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A top review - loved the piece on Eric Brook, sadly his career and his life were relatively short lived but 78 years is a long time for a record to stand and he will always be a part of City's history, when they played with a 'casey' and heading one of those when wet was like heading a ball bearing, not like the beach balls they play with today.
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21 September 2017 22:41 Post ID: #606809 - in reply to #606727
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Woy will come for a point and set up accordingly. On paper this is a forgone conclusion 3 pointer for us, key will be an early goal. As for our team I have no idea, just can't get close to reading Pep.
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21 September 2017 22:45 Post ID: #606810 - in reply to #606727
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Ederson

Walker, Stones, Otamendi, Mendy

De Bruyne, Fernandinho, Silva D

Silva B, G Jesus, Aguero

Subs:-

Bravo, Mangala, Danilo, Toure, Sterling, Sané, Diaz

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21 September 2017 23:29 Post ID: #606811 - in reply to #606727
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No-one think Pep might go for three at the back, then?
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22 September 2017 10:48 Post ID: #606820 - in reply to #606727
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My feelings are, If he goes three at the back he needs a spare on the bench. As it is Kompany is doubtful and he won't gamble on Tosin.

Similarly he does not have spare wing backs and that is why he keeps Danilo in reserve although he has tried Delphy Sané and Ferna in that left back position.

I know it's Palace but never underestimate the opposition even one at the bottom of the table, go for the throat.
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22 September 2017 15:31 Post ID: #606824 - in reply to #606727
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Kompany in contention for this one according to Pep's presser.

Agree with Bluedub/Skoorb about the line up, and Sane being in for Sterling.
I reckon Sane making way for Fernie on Wednesday indicated he's likely to start.

Kompany may come in for Mangala on the bench, and Delph for Diaz.

My 17
Ederson, Walker, Mendy, Stones, Otamendi, Fernie, D Silva, Sane, De Bruyne, Aguero, G Jesus

Danilo, Kompany, Toure, B Silva, Delph, Sterling

Equally, not surprised if the two Silvas change places with Tuesday and the CL in mind.
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22 September 2017 17:31 Post ID: #606828 - in reply to #606727
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It would a good idea, the edler Sillva is no spring chicken.
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22 September 2017 20:50 Post ID: #606830 - in reply to #606727
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How long can Sane be kept on the berti for?

Nice problem to have.

Chelsea on the horizon...

Good times!

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22 September 2017 20:51 Post ID: #606831 - in reply to #606727
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And Blue Mendy best LB since Bobby Mac!

Or TP?

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23 September 2017 11:43 Post ID: #606847 - in reply to #606727
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Buzz is off to the match see you later
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