ENGLAND: Premier League
Time: 15:00 PM
Etihad Stadium (Manchester)
Manchester City were strangely off the pace against Tottenham Hotspur as they became just the third side to open their Premier League (PL) title defence with a defeat. Although losing three consecutive competitive fixtures 1-0 doesn’t constitute a crisis, it’s the first time they’ve failed to score in three successive matches in all competitions under Pep Guardiola which could therefore motivate another push to sign Harry Kane.
Although they’ve lost three of their last five home PL games (W2), history suggests that the ‘Cityzens’ will get back on track here as they won the last three competitive home H2Hs, scoring an average of 4.67 goals per game. Furthermore, they’ve scored an average of 2.6 goals per fixture across their last five opening home league matches of the season (W2, D2, L1).
Promoted after winning the Championship last term, the fixture computer was not kind to Norwich City, forcing them to start by facing the last two PL champions! Beaten 3-0 by Liverpool last week, they’ve now lost 11 straight top-flight matches and have conceded inside 30 minutes of each of their last three league fixtures.
Recently linked with a move for Gary Cahill as they look for more defensive options in anticipation of a battle for survival, the ‘Canaries’ can at least take some confidence from the way they finished last season, they went unbeaten across nine league away games (W7, D2).
Players to watch: Man City’s Kevin De Bruyne has scored twice and laid on two assists in two previous games here against Norwich, for whom Teemu Pukki, scorer of 26 league goals last term, has one goal and one assist from two previous appearances against Man City.
- Manchester City’s form in last 5 matches: LLWWW
- Norwich’s form in last 5 matches: LLWWW.
PREDICTION: Home and Over 1.5