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Preview: Manchester City vs. Southampton - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Wednesday's Premier League clash between Manchester City and Southampton, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Manchester City will be looking to respond to a rare setback when they welcome Southampton to the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday evening.

The Premier League leaders were beaten 2-0 by Manchester United at the weekend, ending a 21-match winning streak, but they are 11 points clear at the summit.

Southampton picked up a first win in 10 in their most recent outing, meanwhile, and are seven points clear of the relegation zone ahead of this midweek clash.


Match preview

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola pictured on March 7, 2021© Reuters

All good things must come to an end, as the saying goes, and so that proved on Sunday as City's incredible winning streak was ended by Man United on home soil.

Six games short of the world record for the number of consecutive wins for a top-flight club in all competitions, held by The New Saints, City were undone by their neighbours.

Bruno Fernandes put United in front inside two minutes from a penalty awarded for Gabriel Jesus's challenge on Anthony Martial, before Luke Shaw struck early in the second half.

Not only did it end City's winning run, it was also the first defeat the Citizens had tasted in 28 games in all competitions since November 2020.

Still, Pep Guardiola's men have one hand on the title and are still on course for an unprecedented quadruple of the Premier League, EFL Cup, FA Cup and Champions League.

Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl pictured on March 1, 2021© Reuters

Guardiola will be after a swift response from his players on Wednesday as City look to avoid back-to-back home league losses for the first time since February 2016.

In fact, the former Bayern Munich and Barcelona boss has never suffered successive home league defeats in his entire managerial career.

A point would no doubt feel like a victory for opponents Southampton, who picked up a much-needed win at bottom side Sheffield United on Saturday to ease their relegation worries.

James Ward-Prowse and Che Adams were on target at Bramall Lane - the latter scoring a sublime half-volley - to keep the Saints equidistant from the bottom three and top half.

Southampton had previously lost eight of their last nine matches to slide way down the division, but Ralph Hasenhuttl will be hopeful that his side are now back on track.

However, the Saints have lost eight of their last nine Premier League away games against Man City, with their only victory coming in their first visit to the stadium in April 2004.

Manchester City Premier League form:
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L

Manchester City form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L

Southampton Premier League form:
  • L
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • W

Southampton form (all competitions):
  • W
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • W



Team News

Sergio Aguero in action for Manchester City on December 15, 2020© Reuters

Guardiola could have a full group of players to choose from on Wednesday following Nathan Ake's return from an injury that has sidelined the defender since December.

Rotation will be key heading into a run of fixtures across four different competitions, which may mean the likes of Phil Foden, Aymeric Laporte, Kyle Walker and Bernardo Silva returning to the starting lineup against Southampton.

Sergio Aguero was again an unused substitute against United, but the Argentina international will be eager to get some minutes under his belt and this is as good a chance as any.

Raheem Sterling has been involved in 11 goals in 16 Premier League games against Southampton, though he is among those that will likely be given a breather a few days on from the Manchester derby defeat.

As for Southampton, Danny Ings limped off early on in the win at Bramall Lane and is set for another spell on the sidelines.

Adams performed brilliantly as a substitute at the weekend and his reward should be a starting spot alongside Nathan Tella, who was arguably the Saints' key man against Sheff Utd.

Michael Obafemi, Oriol Romeu, William Smallbone and Theo Walcott will definitely play no part because of injury.

Manchester City possible starting lineup:
Ederson; Walker, Dias, Laporte, Zinchenko; Silva, Fernandinho, Gundogan; Torres, Aguero, Foden

Southampton possible starting lineup:
Forster; Maitland-Niles, Bednarek, Vestergaard, Bertrand; Armstrong, Diallo, Ward-Prowse, Minamino; Adams, Tella


SM words green background

We say: Manchester City 2-0 Southampton

City's winning run came to an end at the weekend and Guardiola will be after a response from his players to ensure that Man United do not make up more ground in the title race.

Southampton are seeking back-to-back league wins for the first time since before Christmas, but we cannot see past a routine home victory on Wednesday evening.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 2.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 2.5:data


Video prediction

Watch the Sports Mole Football Shorts prediction for this game below:


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Manchester City's Joao Cancelo and teammates remonstrate with referee Chris Kavanagh against Manchester United in the Premier League on December 12, 2020
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City32235467234474
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd31189461342763
3Leicester CityLeicester31175955371856
4West Ham UnitedWest Ham31167851391255
5Chelsea31159750311954
6Liverpool31157953371652
7Tottenham HotspurSpurs321481054371750
8Everton31147104340349
9Arsenal31136124335845
10Leeds UnitedLeeds31143144949045
11Aston Villa301351243331044
12Wolverhampton WanderersWolves31108133141-1038
13Crystal Palace31108133352-1938
14Southampton31106153956-1736
15Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton31712123338-533
16Burnley3189142542-1733
17Newcastle UnitedNewcastle3188153251-1932
18Fulham32511162442-1826
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom3159172859-3124
20Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd3142251755-3814

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