Manchester City travel to the South Coast as they prepare to face high-flying Southampton in the Premier League tomorrow afternoon.
A Southampton victory against Pep Guardiola’s City, will rocket the Saints to second in the table. City on the other hand, can only climb to fifth at best and that's if results go their way.
Following on from two consecutive top-flight draws and with a game in hand, it’s a must win match for the team in sky blue.
Star City striker Sergio Aguero could be in contention to feature at St Mary’s. Despite a new injury problem and the forward playing for only 14 minutes against West Brom mid-week, Guardiola suggested that his number ten could feature from off the bench.
City midfielder Kevnin De Bruyne will not be rested. Guardiola explained to the media that the Belgian is too important to sideline.
Oleksandr Zinchenko and Eric Garcia are the only two City injury concerns.
In-form City defender John Stones was left out against West Brom but, should return against Ralph Hasenhüttl’s side. Regular bench warmers Kyle Walker, Fernandinho and Riyad Mahrez are three others pushing for inclusion in the squad.
Southampton have no injury concerns or suspensions.
Saints midfielder Nathan Redmond and winger Moussa Djenepo were brought on as second-half substitutions against Arsenal mid-week. Both are pushing for recalls.
Southampton: McCarthy; Walker-Peters, Bednarek, Vestergaard, Bertrand; Walcott, Ward-Prowse, Romeu, Armstrong; Adams, Ings.
City: Ederson; Walker, Stones, Dias, Cancelo; Fernandinho, Gundogan; Mahrez, De Bruyne, Sterling; Aguero
Ones to watch
According to City boss Guardiola, Saints midfielders Oriol Romeu and James Ward-Prowse are two to keep an eye on as City try to close a four-point gap on their rivals.
“Hasenhüttl has one of the best midfielders in the Premier League. Romeu,” Guardiola said.
"They have James Ward-Prowse, incredible player in set pieces. So no surprise in their success.”
Several City players, including De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling will be desperate to get their names back onto the scoresheet against Southampton.
Head to head
The two sides last met over five months ago in the Premier League at St Mary’s. Southampton won the game 1-0 courtesy of a Che Adams goal. It was the first time that the Saints had beaten City in over four years.
Southampton go into tomorrow’s tie in the same league form as City. The Saints have won two of their last five games (drawing twice and losing once). The same goes for Manchester City, who’s league schedule has been interrupted by Champions League fixtures.
Southampton 1 Manchester City 2
Where to watch on TV
The match will be shown live on Amazon Prime.