Predicted Manchester City line-up to face Fulham in the Premier League
Premier League champions Manchester City would be eager to keep close distance on the early pace-setters when they face Fulham. Pep Guardiola has Champions League fixtures on the horizon but before that, he will be looking at this game as a separate event.
Three wins and a draw is not a bad start by any stretch of imagination. However, the level set by City is immaculate, so they will be expected to beat their London opponents. A tough away trip to Liverpool is around the corner as well, so Guardiola wouldn’t want to lose any silly points before that monster battle.
Raheem Sterling is a doubt after suffering a knock which forced him out of the international games. However, the Englishman is on course to start the game this weekend. Kevin de Bruyne is a long-term absentee, along with Claudio Bravo, Danilo and Mangala. Guardiola might bring in Bernardo Silva in place of Riyad Mahrez, who is still acclimatising to new surroundings.
Probable Manchester City XI
Manager: Pep Guardiola
The Brazilian is expected to keep the goal and continue his good work with his hand and feet.
Kyle Walker (RB)
Played the second international game and is slowly recovering the full rhythm after a marathon World Cup run. A sure starter.
John Stones (CB)
The Englishman has been solid and assured at the back so far. The manager would want to keep the secured pair at the back going.
Aymeric Laporte (CB)
Was probably bought in January to strengthen the left-sided centre-back role, with Benjamin Mendy bombing forward. That plan is in existence now.
Benjamin Mendy (LB)
Don’t be surprised if Mendy plays as a left-winger on Saturday, just because of the territorial dominance that City will have.
Guardiola would think about resting the Brazilian for the Champions League game. But given the fact that this is the first match after a two-week break, the manager may just start him.
David Silva (ACM)
With de Bruyne out and Ilkay Gundogan maybe rested ahead of the Champions League, David Silva may continue to play in that pocket role between the lines.
Bernardo Silva (RM)
The versatile player can actually roam around from right-wing to right-sided midfield. He might start ahead of Mahrez.
Raheem Sterling (LW)
Was out from the international games due to a knock, but is now fit enough to start this weekend. He will be fresh and raring to go.
Gabriel Jesus (SS)
The Brazilian should play alongside Aguero in a two-man striker system. He needs a goal or two to regain full confidence.
Sergio Aguero (ST)
The goal machine is at his peak at the moment and City would hope his rich vein of form continues in all competitions.