Nathan Ake will partner Aymeric Laporte at the heart of the City defense this afternoon as we take on Burnley at Turf Moor.
Ake replaces John Stones, who is on the bench after leaving the England squad early and missing their midweek win over Ivory Coast as a precaution.
That’s one of three changes from the team that started our 4-1 win away at Southampton in the FA Cup before the international break, with Ederson returning in goal to replace Zack Steffen and Gabriel Jesus making way for Phil Foden in attack.
Kevin De Bruyne starts and makes his 200th Premier League appearance, but Ruben Dias remains sidelined with a hamstring injury.
Starting XI: Pope, Roberts, Tarkowski, Long, Taylor, Lennon, Cork, Westwood, Brownhill, McNeil, Weghorst
Subs: Hennessey, Norris, Lowton, Thomas, Dodgson, Stephens, Cornet, Barnes, Rodriguez
Starting XI: Ederson, Walker, Laporte, Ake, Cancelo, Rodrigo, Gundogan (C), De Bruyne, Grealish, Sterling, Foden
Subs: Steffen, Stones, Jesus, Zinchenko, Bernardo, Fernandinho, Mahrez, Egan Riley, Mbete
It’s the usual 4-3-3 for City today, with possession of the ball, quick passing and high-intensity work rate key facets of our game.
Ederson returns in goal, with Aymeric Laporte, who makes his 100th Premier League appearance today, and Nathan Ake at centre-half.
Kyle Walker will look to get forward down the right and add width, with Joao Cancelo doing the same down the left.
Rodri will sit deep and protect the back four, with Kevin De Bruyne and Ilkay Gundogan just ahead of him. That’s a midfield three with steel and guile in abundance.
And it’s seems likely Phil Foden will play as centrally in the False 9 role, with Raheem Sterling and Jack Grealish either side of him.
As ever, those front three positions will be fluid as City look to cause problems with our movement.
Burnley are one of the Premier League’s more direct sides, with set pieces likely to be an area they will look to exploit.
There’s little doubt this will be an uncomfortable afternoon for City as we look to secure three vital Premier League points.
head to head
Manchester City have won their last nine meetings with Burnley in all competitions by an aggregate score of 32-1.
Burnley have taken just one point from their last 11 Premier League meetings with City.
Burnley have lost their last three Premier League games without scoring a goal.
They could win their 50th Premier League match at Turf Moor, although they have had only two victories in their last 23 top-flight home matches (D11, L10).
Sean Dyche’s side have failed to score in 54% of their home games (seven of 13) in this season’s top flight – the lowest percentage in the division.
There have been 26 Premier League goals scored at Turf Moor this season, at least four fewer than at any other top-flight stadium.
Dwight McNeil has had more shots without scoring than any other player in the Premier League this season (34).
Manchester City have lost just one of their last 19 Premier League matches (W16, D2).
But after their 0-0 draw at Crystal Palace last time out, they could drop points in consecutive league matches for the first time since December 2020.
City have the best away record in the top flight, winning 11 of their 15 away games (D3, L1).
Pep Guardiola’s side are the only team yet to drop a single point from a winning position in the Premier League this season, triumphing in all 22 games in which they’ve led.
Manchester City have won 24 of their last 26 Premier League games against sides starting the day in the relegation zone.
Riyad Mahrez has been directly involved in 29 goals in 36 appearances in all competitions for Manchester City this season (22 goals and seven assists).