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If any side was going to break Brighton & Hove Albion’s defensive resilience, it was free-scoring Man City, who chalked up a quartet of goals on the South Coast to ease to a 4-1 victory over Graham Potter‘s men last weekend.
Phil Foden bagged a brace while Ilkay Gundogan and Riyad Mahrez also found the back of the net at the Amex Stadium, with Alexis Mac Allister‘s penalty proving to be little more than a consolation for the home side.
However, Foden went from hero zero as City’s quest of an unprecedented fifth EFL Cup crown in succession came to an end in midweek, with the England starlet failing to convert from 12 yards as West Ham United advanced to the quarter-finals.
Pep Guardiola certainly has bigger fish to fry than the EFL Cup, though, as third-placed City seek to keep the pressure on Liverpool and Chelsea, who are one and two points ahead of them in the top three of the table respectively.
Now unbeaten in eight Premier League games since their opening-day defeat to Tottenham Hotspur, City’s tally of 12 goals on home soil is the second-best record in the league behind Chelsea’s 16, and they are the only team in the division yet to concede on familiar territory so far this term.
City continue to cope without Ferran Torres as he works his way back from a foot fracture, but Guardiola otherwise has no fresh injury concerns to work around for this contest.
The likes of Ruben Dias, Aymeric Laporte and Joao Cancelo are all set for recalls to the first XI, although next week’s crunch matches with Club Brugge and Manchester United must be taken into account here.
Mahrez and Raheem Sterling should drop to the bench as Gabriel Jesus and Jack Grealish return out wide, with Foden continuing as the focal point of attack after his strong showing at the Amex.
As for Palace, long-term victims Eberechi Eze and Nathan Ferguson are making progress in their recoveries but are not ready to return just yet, and the visitors did not report any further issues from the draw with Newcastle.
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Wilfried Zaha took his spot on the bench for that encounter after recovering from illness – with Michael Olise earning a deserved start in his place – but the Ivorian should certainly make the first XI this time.
There should be no further surprises in the Eagles’ XI, with Conor Gallagher holding his spot in the engine room alongside James McArthur and Luka Milivojevic.
Manchester City possible starting lineup:
Ederson; Walker, Dias, Laporte, Cancelo; Silva, Rodri, De Bruyne; Jesus, Foden, Grealish
Crystal Palace possible starting lineup:
Guaita; Ward, Andersen, Guehi, Mitchell; McArthur, Milivojevic, Gallagher; Edouard, Benteke, Zaha