Champions Manchester City look to keep pace of the rivalling pack as they entertain Southampton at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday.
Guardiola’s side have sprung into sensational form after their surprise opening day defeat to Tottenham, winning their last five games in all competitions – scoring an impressive 18 goals in that time – not bad for a team who started the season without a striker.
After an exhilarating start to their Champions League campaign with a 6-3 victory against RB Leipzig on Wednesday, City hadn’t conceded in their last three games.
It began at the King Power stadium which saw a hard-fought 1-0 victory against Leicester with Bernardo Silva scoring the only goal of the game which could prove vital come the end of the season.
Manchester City’s home record against the Saints is an impressive one, winning 11 of their last 12 encounters and scoring two or more goals in each of those games which should give added incentive to turn fortunes around for Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side.
As for Southampton, they continue to search for their first win of the Premier League season following three consecutive draws which included their close encounter against West Ham last weekend and the thrilling 2-2 draw away at Newcastle which saw them equalise in the 96th minute of the match.
With none of Manchester City’s last 30 Premier League games ending in a draw and facing just four shots on target so far this season, it looks to be an uphill task for the Saints against a side very much on form.
Hasenhuttl is still without Stuart Armstrong and Theo Walcott who are still being assessed for their injuries, while Shane Long continues to be ruled out following his COVID-19 diagnosis.
As for City, the defensive pairing of John Stones and Aymeric Laporte remain on the sidelines with no set return date yet confirmed, while Benjamin Mendy remains suspended following his pending investigation by the police.
Manchester City vs Southampton – kick off at 3pm (UK time) on Saturday 18th September 2021