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Preview: Manchester City vs Leicester City – prediction, team news, line-ups

Manchester City vs Leicester City Preview

Saturday’s Premier League action concludes at the Etihad Stadium as Manchester City trade tackles with Leicester City looking to extend their exceptional winning streak.

The Cityzens will be gunning for a tenth consecutive win across all competitions after making light work of Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich in their last contest.

Pep Guardiola’s side have set their sights firmly on winning the treble this term and have a chance to close the gap on title rivals Arsenal at the Premier League summit.

Completing the double over Leicester after coming away from King Power Stadium with a slender 1-0 win in October will add weight to their lofty ambitions.

Leicester, who have found points hard to come by after picking up just one from a possible 24 over their last eight games, will be hoping to give the champions a run for their money in Manchester.

Newly appointed interim manager Dean Smith could make a statement with an improbable win over the reigning champions. But the odds are firmly stacked against the uninspiring Foxes heading into the weekend contest.

Match Preview

What was expected to be a closely contested encounter turned into a demolition as Man City hammered Bayern 3-0 to put one foot in the semi-final of Europe’s most prestigious tournament.

Even with a nearly insurmountable lead, the Cityzens are aware the job is only half done with the Champions League famous for delivering sensational comebacks.

However, Guardiola’s side have put themselves in a strong position to progress to the last four as they inch closer to grasping a trophy that has eluded them since the Spaniard arrived in Manchester.

Celebrations over their emphatic first-leg feat will have to be short-lived, with a return to domestic action against the desperate Foxes on the cards.

Sitting six points behind Arsenal following their draw against Liverpool, Man City could get within three points of the Gunners with a win at the weekend and still have a game in hand.

While they are expected to register a routine win over the toothless Foxes, Guardiola’s side will be wary of complacency as a new manager bounce could see Leicester rise to the occasion.

However, Man City have found their groove in attack, scoring 24 goals in their last five games across all competitions while netting at least three times in each game.

The Cityzens head into Saturday’s clash having won ten of their previous 12 league encounters with Leicester (L2), including the last four in a row.

They were involved in a nine-goal thriller in their last home meeting with the Foxes, winning 6-3 in December 2021, although they needed a stunning Kevin De Bruyne free-kick to nab the victory in the reverse fixture in October.

Erling Braut Haaland has scored 30 league goals this term and has Andrew Cole’s 29-year-old record of 34 goals in a debut season in the competition firmly in his sights.

His partner in crime, De Bruyne, who has provided seven assists for Haaland this season, is also gunning for his 100th assist for the Cityzens in the competitions.

Another victory for Man City will help maintain their impressive momentum heading into next week’s Champions League second-leg clash with Bayern in Germany, followed by a trip to Wembley Stadium for an FA Cup semi-final contest with Sheffield United.

Leicester’s wretched run of form continued last weekend after succumbing to a 1-0 defeat to fellow relegation strugglers Bournemouth.

Philip Billing was the point of difference as his first-half strike slayed the Foxes, who have failed to improve despite Brendan Rodger’s sack after four years as Leicester boss.

The Northern Irish manager left Leicester scrambling for their top-flight future as they languish in 19th place in the Premier League standings, two points off 17th-placed Everton.

Smith, who was sacked by Norwich City in December, has been brought in to pick up the pieces and has eight games to steer the Foxes away from the relegation zone. 

However, the Englishman would have hoped to kick off his interim tenure with a less daunting fixture, having lost all of his previous six meetings against the Cityzens, with his teams conceding 19 goals.

A spirited and resilient display will be required if they wish to avoid a 20th league defeat of the campaign at the weekend – it would be the first time they have lost that many games since the 2001/02 campaign.

Premier League form

Manchester City: WWWWW

Leicester City: LDLLL

Team News

Phil Foden remains sidelined as he continues to recover from appendix surgery, while De Bruyne is fit to feature after Guardiola played down fears that he sustained an injury against Bayern.

With one eye on next week’s Champions League showdown in Germany, Guardiola will likely consider rotating his starting line-up, with Aymeric Laporte, Kyle Walker, and Rico Lewis all in contention to feature.

Julian Alvarez could also lead the line in Haaland’s stead while Riyad Mahrez replaces Bernardo Silva, who dazzled against Bayern, on the right flank.

Leicester could be without Harvey Barnes, who was forced off in the second half of the Bournemouth match with a hamstring issue. 

Youri Tielemans (ankle), James Justin and Ryan Bertrand (both knee) also remain sidelined, but Jonny Evans, who was an unused substitute last weekend, could make his return following a thigh injury.

Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall is available for selection after serving a ban and could be recalled to midfield at the expense of Boubakary Soumare.

Jamie Vardy is poised to mark his 300th Premier League appearance for the Foxes with a goal against the Cityzens, having scored more league goals against Guardiola’s City side than any other player (eight).

Manchester City potential starting line-up:

(4-3-3): Ederson; Kyle Walker, Manuel Akanji, Aymeric Laporte, Rico Lewis; Kevin De Bruyne, Rodri, Ilkay Gundogan; Riyad Mahrez, Julian Alvarez, Jack Grealish.

Leicester City potential starting line-up:

(4-2-3-1): Daniel Iversen; Timothy Castagne, Jonny Evans, Wout Faes, Victor Kristiansen; Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall, Wilfred Ndidi; Ricardo Pereira, James Maddison, Tete; Jamie Vardy.

How to Watch?

Man City vs Leicester, alongside all other fixtures in England’s top flight, is available to watch online via live Premier League streams.

We Say: Manchester City 3-0 Leicester City

Both sides head into the weekend encounter in contrasting form and need maximum points to bolster their ambitions.

However, the odds are firmly stacked against Leicester, and Man City look poised to extend their impressive winning streak to ten games in front of their home supporters.

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