The Etihad Stadium is set to be a noisy one on Sunday afternoon when Premier League Champions Manchester City will be lifting the trophy, but first, they must play a struggling Huddersfield Town team who are in desperate need of points to secure survival.
What is at stake for both sides?
A win for Pep Guardiola’s side would see them break the Premier League record for the season, which is currently the 95 points that Chelsea won in 2004/05 – and they still have two more games to play after Sunday.
Chelsea won 30 league games last season on their way to the 2016/17 title, and City are only one win away from beating that total.
The Citizens are only one goal behind the top-flight record – which was also set by Chelsea in 2009/10 with 103 goals.
Since being crowned champions, City haven’t slowed down, and it is clear they want to continue their impressive form and results.
They overturned Swansea City 5–0 at home, before beating West Ham United by a 4-1 scoreline last week – which certainly won’t look good from the Terrier’s perspective, who are the joint lowest scorers in the league.
With regards to Huddersfield, three points would see them all but safe – as they currently sit in 16th place with 35 points, only three points above the relegation zone.
They could be heading into the game in the relegation zone, however, if Swansea and Southampton beat Bournemouth and Everton respectively on Saturday.
Claiming three points, whilst seemingly very difficult, is absolutely crucial for the Terriers.
With a trip to Chelsea, and a last day home clash with Arsenal to follow, Huddersfield have a difficult run-in, and are surely going to be hoping fellow relegation rivals’ results go their way in order to keep them above the drop zone.
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Last time out
Last November, David Wagner’s men felt unlucky to not secure even a point against the Citizens.
Huddersfield took the lead on the stroke of half-time, when a Christopher Schindler header deflected into the back of the net by Nicolas Otamendi.
However, an early second-half penalty from Sergio Aguero pulled the Citizens level, before Gabriel Jesus’ shot was blocked in the dying minutes, only for Town keeper Jonas Lössl to palm it straight into the path of Raheem Sterling who slotted home – allowing Guardiola’s side to continue their unbeaten run of 18 games.
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Team and Injury News
Versatile forward Tom Ince is set to face a late fitness test for Huddersfield after missing last week’s defeat to Everton due to a hamstring problem, but if this game comes slightly too early for him, manager David Wagner is “confident” that he will be fit to face Chelsea just three days later.
Defender Michael Hefele is back in training after being out for much of the season with an Achilles, but it is unlikely that he will feature.
They also have the two long-term injuries of Danny Williams and Elias Kachunga who remain out for the rest of the season.
Manchester City remain without striker Aguero, who is recovering from knee surgery, but defenders Vincent Kompany and John Stones are back in contention after their own respective injuries.