Manchester City look to head into the second international break of the season hot on the heels of leaders Liverpool, as the Blues host Wolves at the Etihad on Sunday afternoon, aiming to make it 4 league wins from 5.
Nuno Espírito Santo’s Wolverhampton have struggled to reach the heights of last season as they currently sit 13th in the league with only 1 win all season. However, they will be coming into Sunday’s game in high spirts after a late win against Besiktas in the Europa League on Thursday.
Head To Head
Sunday’s game will be the 120th meeting between the two sides, with City unbeaten at home to the Wanderers since 1999. Wolves haven’t beaten City since October 2010 – a match where the Blues suffered a 2-1 defeat. There have been 7 meetings since then, culminating in 6 wins and 1 draw – one of the wins including a League Cup tie in 2017, where Claudio Bravo’s penalty shoot out heroics won the tie for City.
Sergio Aguero has only scored once in his career against Wolves but comes into game week 8 as the league’s top goalscorer with 8 goals. Manchester City have so far scored 27 goals in the Premiership this season, averaging almost 4 goals a game, whilst Wolves have only kept 2 clean sheets in the league this season.
The two sides last met in January, where Manchester City won 3-0 with a first half brace from Gabriel Jesus.
Pep Guardiola confirmed that both Kevin De Bruyne and John Stones will miss out on this weekend’s game due to injury but both are expected back after the international break. Whilst Leroy Sane and Aymeric Laporte remain longterm absentees. Bernardo Silva is available despite talk of a potential ban, following an FA charge in relation to a tweet about team mate Benjamin Mendy, with the Portuguese international having until October 9th to respond. Wolves are without forward Diego Jota, who is sidelined with an ankle injury.
Manchester City come into the game off the back of a convincing 2-0 win against Dinamo Zagreb in the Champions League after successfully manoeuvring past Everton in what at times proved a tricky task on Merseyside last week. Wolves have also won twice this week after a victory in Turkey on Thursday night, in addition to registering their first league win of the season against Watford at the weekend.
The Managers Thoughts
City boss hailed Wolves’ win against Besiktas as “incredible” and said how they were “solid as expected” and how “they have a team that make you suffer.” Pep Guardiola also had praise for summer signing João Cancelo; “He made a step forward against Preston and was really good too. He arrived late in pre-season so most of the things we worked on were completely different to what he was used to, so he needed time but he’s getting better”
Craig Pawson will be officiating this fixture after taking charge the last time City and Wolves met at the Etihad, where he showed Willy Boly a red card early on in the game. Pawson has taken charge of 16 games involving City to date. He will be assisted by Lee Betts and Richard West whilst David Coote and Marc Perry will be watching in London as VAR and VAAR. Chris Kavanagh will the fourth official.
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