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Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City host Maurizio Sarri’s Chelsea at the Etihad for the massive game of the 2018/19 Premier League season.

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After back-to-back wins against Arsenal and Everton, Man City are sitting level on points with Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool coming into the weekend’s fixtures. Liverpool face Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth at 15:00 on Saturday meaning that they will be setting the pace in the title race this Premier League gameweek. Guardiola has slightly tweaked his winning formula in recent weeks, his team’s 4-3-3 now rotates to a 3-2-2-3 when City are in possession. With either John Stones or Fernandinho starting at centre back then moving into defensive midfield, going back to the old school W-M. Bernando Silva has become Pep’s golden kid this season with the impressive distance that he covers per game. But what Guardiola needs to win the Premier League is David Silva and Kevin De Bruyne firing on all cylinders. The pair haven’t hit the heights of last season and a big performance is due. Up front, City have looked good in recent weeks with Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling causing all sorts of problems for Premier League fullbacks and Aguero back in form. Guardiola is still without Benjamin Mendy at left back, so is likely to continue with Laporte, Otamendi, Stones and Walker in defence. 

Chelsea were extremely busy in the transfer window, keeping Eden Hazard until at least the summer, agreeing the transfer of Christian Pulisic from Dortmund to Chelsea in the summer and loaning Gonzalo Higuain from Juventus. Maurizio Sarri has been under a little pressure in recent weeks after his side’s 4-0 drubbing at the hands of Bournemouth - but last weeks 5-0 thrashing of Huddersfield Town including 2 goals each for Hazard and Higuain will have done a lot to help get things back on track! Expect Sarri to play his usual back four of Marcos Alonso, David Luiz, Antonio Rudiger and Cesar Azpilicueta, his big game midfied of Jorginho, Kante and Kovacic, then Willian, Higuain and Hazard up front. 

Will Sarri beat Guardiola again and hand Liverpool the advantage in the title race?

#ManchesterCity #Chelsea #PremierLeague 

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