Liverpool FC have shown Man City how to pass Newcastle test – Simon Bajkowski

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Do what Liverpool did

Mancester City are following Liverpool every weekend in the Premier League, and this game is up against the same opponents that Jurgen Klopp’s side faced last time out. What is more, it comes after a similarly energy-sapping Champions League game, albeit with an extra day of recovery for the Blues.

Newcastle have been in excellent form under Eddie Howe to emerge away from the relegation dogfight but were completely neutralized by Liverpool last week. The Merseysiders were not at their best but created more than enough chances to win the game and kept the home side at arm’s length throughout; Newcastle ended a home match with just four shots (two of those were on target) and zero corners.

There is even less reason for Howe’s side to be adventurous away from home, and City are even better than Liverpool at keeping the ball so it should be simple enough for the match this weekend to take on the same pattern. Then, it will come down to what happens in both boxes.

If City are clinical enough in attack and sound enough at the back, they will be top of the table with just three games to go. If not, we will again be talking about their biggest weakness this season.

ALSO READ: Guardiola fires back at Man City critics after Champions League exit

home advantage

Following this match, City must travel to Wolves and West Ham in the league. Both of those teams have made a pig’s ear in recent weeks of confirming European football for next season, yet will still be tough grounds for the Blues to go to.

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Home advantage is not to be sniffed at in this competition, however hard it can be for City as so many teams shut up shop at the Etihad from the first whistle. City focus on doing the simple things right under Guardiola and winning your home games is another basic that must be mastered.

The next Foden?

When City looked to bounce back from their agonizing 2019 defeat against Tottenham in the Premier League, Guardiola sprung a surprise and gave young Phil Foden a rare league start. He was rewarded with the teenager scoring the only goal of the game against Spurs to keep City ahead of Liverpool.

There are plenty of senior options for the manager to choose from against Newcastle, but there are also James McAtee and Cole Palmer – two promising prospects in excellent form who will not be as devastated by the Champions League exit as those who played in it.

Guardiola has already shown this season he can throw in a youngster when he started Palmer against Everton: could or should he do it again?

Ederson chasing treble

City may be only able to win one competition this season but Ederson is still chasing an awards treble. Having claimed the Golden Glove for the most clean sheets in each of the past two seasons, the Brazilian is one behind countryman Alisson with four games of the remaining season.

Ederson may feel he has something to prove after receiving criticism in the Real game, and by helping the team out at the end of the season can also push his case for individual honours.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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