Venue: The Etihad Stadium
Date & Time: Saturday 14th October, 15:00.
Manchester City welcome Stoke City to the Etihad Stadium this Saturday, the fixture promises to be an entertaining spectacle after the international break which saw the English national side qualify for the World Cup in Russia next summer.
Last time the two sides faced each other the points were shared in a 0-0 draw at the Etihad. Both sides never really threatened each other, instead many of the fans at that game were keeping track of the iconic Barcelona comeback against PSG in the latter stages of the Champions League. Hughes’ game plan was perfectly executed by his men in March, sit back and hit City on the break, which is what most teams have attempted this season against Pep’s boys.
(Manchester) City are in top form, sitting atop the pile and unbeaten in the league this season. Yes it is early days but they are really looking like the real deal, and not the underwhelming side we all saw last season. City dominated the champions Chelsea at Stamford Bridge just before the international break, a 0-1 victory for Guardiola’s side with former Chelsea man Kevin De Bruyne scoring the winner in the 66th minute. City certainly showed their title credentials that day.
Stoke sit in 13th place, having only won 2 of their 7 Premier League games played. Their latest game saw them seal their second win of the season at home to Southampton with a 2-1 win. Peter Crouch’s 85th minute winner gave the Potters some hope going into this tough tie for them. Stoke will most likely attack more this time against City, and I can’t blame them with their attack being bolstered by the signings of Jese Rodriguez and Eric Choupo-Moting (not to forget the veteran Crouch).
I expect City to edge this one, purely because of their attacking prowess.
Score Prediction: Man City 2-1 Stoke City.