Preview: Manchester City vs. Southampton

Preview: Man City vs. Southampton
© PA Photos
Manchester City kick off the defence of their Premier League title by taking on new boys Southampton at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday.

Manchester City begin the defence of their Premier League title with a home clash against newly-promoted side Southampton.

The blue half of Manchester have been relatively quiet in the transfer window this summer so far, with Everton's Jack Rodwell being the only acquisition for manager Roberto Mancini.

While the midfielder is not expected to feature on Sunday, familiar faces should fill the City side, including captain Vincent Kompany, who will line the back four with Sergio Aguero and Carlos Tevez partnering up front.

Meanwhile, Southampton boss Nigel Adkins is expected to be without Jack Cork after the midfielder picked up an ankle problem during the Saints' pre-season schedule. However, new signings Nathaniel Clyne and Jay Rodriguez are in contention to start at the Etihad Stadium this weekend.

While the coastal club have agreed a reported £11.8m fee for Bologna playmaker Gaston Ramirez, the Uruguayan will not be eligible to play on Sunday.

Possible lineups:

Manchester City: Hart; Zabaleta, Kompany, Lescott, Clichy; Yaya Toure, De Jong; Silva, Nasri; Tevez, Aguero

Southampton: K Davis; Clyne, Fonte, Hooiveld, Fox; Guly, Schneiderlin, S Davis, Lallana; Rodriguez, Lambert

Sports Mole says: 3-0

Roberto Mancini
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City23202167175062
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd23155348163250
3Liverpool23138254282647
4Chelsea23145441162547
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs23135546212544
6Arsenal23116641301139
7Burnley239771920-134
8Leicester CityLeicester238783432231
9Everton2376102538-1327
10Watford2375113342-926
11West Ham UnitedWest Ham2367102941-1225
12Crystal Palace2367102133-1225
13Bournemouth2366112435-1124
14Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2366111939-2024
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2365122131-1023
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2358101729-1223
17Southampton2349102334-1121
18Stoke CityStoke2355132350-2720
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom23310101830-1219
20Swansea CitySwansea2345141435-2117
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