Etihad Stadium, Manchester
22nd November 2014, 20:30 IST
An ailing Manchester City squad take on a high flying Swansea City in Gameweek 12 of the Barclay’s Premier League. Although Manchester City sit third, their form has been poor off late and has jolted them with purple patches such as a draw against Queens Park Ragners last time around. Meanwhile, after defeating Arsenal at home, Swansea City would look to carry their impressive form forward and if possible upset the Citizens. Manchester City would be desperate for a win, as they have struggled to match league leaders Chelsea – which are six points ahead of them.
Team News and Tactical Brief:
Manchester City’s defense is one of the primary reasons that the team has fluttered recently. Equalim Mangala, was in the thick of the action against QPR due to Vincent Kompany sidelined with injury. With defensive lynch pin Kompany still out of the squad and most probably rested for Manchester City’s penultimate fixture against Bayern Munich, the center back pairing of Martin Demichelis and Equalim Mangala is expected to start. Mangala would look to exorcise his demons, which have reeled City with worries.
Starting with a double pivot of Fernandinho and Fernando, gives the freedom to Yaya Toure to operate in a much more attacking role, as seen against QPR. Although the impeccable Yaya Toure has looked off color recently, he still has the capability to carry City on his shoulders, whilst being a game changer. Jesus Navas and Samir Nasri are expected to start once again, as the duo have constantly provided pace and agility upfront.
With the sensational Sergio Aguero, once again expected to lead City, Manchester City could be in for an easy time, if Aguero gets comfortable and decent service from the midfield, which has been a major problem so far.
Although Manchester City come into this match as favorites, their recent form has garnered a spirit where the Champions are expected to lose points. Manchester City would look to exorcise their demons, and gather themselves for this match.
Probable Starting Lineup (4-2-3-1): Joe Hart, Bacary Sagna, Martin Demichelis, Equalim Mangala, Gael Clichy, Fernandinho, Fernando, Yaya Toure, Samir Nasri, Jesus Navas, Sergio Aguero
After beating Arsenal 2-1, Swansea City are expected to play a game without any such pressure. The Swans highly impressed, fans and critics, in the their win against Arsenal, where they put on a star studded show of passing on display. The Swans are expected to defend in numbers and attack via counters.
Wilfred Bony, their main man, is expected to lead the attacking line and operate as a lone striker. The imposing Ivorian has showcased a decent and budding chemistry with Sigurdsson. Defensively, Swansea City are led by captain Ashley Williams, Williams has been one of the consistent performers in the Swansea City side and has impressed with his tactical know how, imposing figure and leading capabilities.
Angel Rangel is another piece of Swansea’s puzzle. Angel, has been one of the key links in the team and provides an attacking option – with his bombarding runs forwards. With Ki sitting at pivot, whilst providing a defensive covering, Swansea would look to commit men behind the ball and attack on counters – taking advantage of the speed present in Nathan Dyer and Montero.
Probable Starting Lineup (4-2-3-1): Lucas Fabianksi, Angel Rangel, Bartley, Ashley Williams, Nathan Taylor, Sung Yung Ki, Carroll, Emnes, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Montero, Wilfried Bony.
- Manchester City have won only one game in their last six matches, in all competitions.
- Swansea has lost all three encounter at the Etihad.
- Manchester City has scored eight goals or more against Swansea, at Ethiad, and conceded none.
- Swansea City could come on par with Manchester City, at points, if they beat City.
- Manchester City face a trip to Bayern Munich, two days from their encounter against Swansea City.
Players To Watch Out For:
Sergio Aguero ( Manchester City)
With Luis Suarez out of the league, there can be no doubts that Sergio Aguero is arguably the best striker in the Premier League. The Argentine has constantly proved to be a menace to opposing teams, whilst scoring goals at a regular but steady pace. Aguero, is expected to lead Man City into this fixture with guns blazing.
Wilfried Bony (Swansea City)
Relishing on physicality, Wilfried Bony has proved to be a handful for Premier League defenses. His scintillating form is one of the major reasons that Swansea lie fifth in the league table. With Vincent Kompany doubtful, Bony would expect to give an off color Mangala a torrid time.
Manchester City 3 – Swansea City 0
Although Manchester City have proved to be somewhat disappointing, in their recent encounters, the Citizens would look to gather themselves and hammer high flying Swansea. City are expected to dominate parts of the game, and could even dominate the possession charts.
Blast From The Past: