Manchester City v Leicester City EPL Match Preview

Manchester City v Leicester City

EPL Match Preview

Leicester City take their three point lead at the top of the Premier League to second placed Manchester City, as the top two go head to head on Saturday lunchtime.

THE CITIZENS LOOK TO EXTEND THEIR UNBEATEN RUN

Manchester City will look to extend their unbeaten run to eight matches when they host the league-leaders on Saturday. Manuel Pellegrini’s side are the Premier Leagues top goalscorers and have a formidable record at the Etihad Stadium, having not lost there since the defeat to Liverpool on November 21st last year. With striker Sergio Augero in devastating form at the moment, the hosts will be confident they can go level on top with the visitors this weekend. The Argentine frontman has scored 17 goals in 25 games in all competitions this season, 13 of those coming in the league. The best sports betting sites price him as short as *1.80 to be an anytime scorer on Saturday, a slightly more generous *4.00 to be first or last goalscorer.

VARDY STRIKE LEAVES THE FOOTBALL WORLD BREATHLESS

We thought we had seen everything from Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy this season, but nothing could have prepared us for what he did against Liverpool on Tuesday evening, as he smashed a 30 yard half-volley thunderbolt past Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet, to surely win the goal of the season award. He scored again later in the game, to take his tally for the season to 18, three ahead of his closest challenger, Spurs’ Harry Kane. Claudio Ranieri’s team refuse to let go of their title aspirations as they sit proudly on top of the Premier League table, only Saturday’s opponents have spent longer at the summit this season, by three o’clock on Saturday, they could be locked together at the head of the standings once again.

TEAM NEWS

Pellegrini has got injury worries ahead of Saturday with no fewer than seven first-team players missing, or in danger of missing the game; Kevin De Bruyne, Samir Nasri, Vincent Kompany, Elaquim Mangala and Wilfried Bony are all definitely out, Jesus Navas and Fabian Delph are both doubtful. Coach Manuel Pellegrini stated after the 1-0 mid-week win against Sunderland; “It is impossible with so many injuries to play with the same team and so it is difficult to have a high pace. It was better that we defended well and we did it with concentration.”

The visitors are in better shape, with only midfielder Matty James and German striker Jeffrey Schlupp unable to travel. Vardy will be looking to add to his impressive goals tally this season in his club’s biggest game of the season so far; the best football betting guides quote him at *2.87 to be an anytime scorer and *7.50 to be first or last scorer.

LINE-UPS

Manchester City (from) Hart, Kolarov, Demichelis, Otamendi, Sagna, Navas, Delph, Silva, Fernandinho, Toure, Sterling, Iheanacho, Augero, Clichy, Caballero, Zabaleta, Fernando, Barker, Celina

Leicester City (from) Schmeichel, Huth, Simpson, Morgan, Fuchs, Albrighton, Drinkwater, Kante, Mahrez, Vardy, Okazaki, Schwarzer, Ulloa, Dyer, Chilwell, Gray, King, Wasilewski

HEAD TO HEAD

Manchester City are unbeaten in their last nine games against Leicester City in all competitions and have scored at least two goals in their last three encounters against them at the Etihad Stadium. The Citizens have also won 16 of their last 19 home Premier League games. The Foxes have kept a clean sheet in five of their last six league games and are undefeated in 14 of their last 15 on the road. The first meeting this season was a tight affair, the game finishing 0-0 in December.

*MATCH BETTING

Manchester City 1.55 Draw 4.00 Leicester City 5.75

*odds courtesy of Bet365

 

Steve Mitchell

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