Manchester City – Bournemouth
Despite of losing the Premier League title to Liverpool, Manchester City will host AFC Bournemouth at the Etihad in a great mood. The reason for this is the fact that City’s Champions League ban was overturned by the CAS. Guardiola’s team will have the chance to play in the prestigious competition next season as well.
In the Premier League Man City already secured the second place. In their last two matches the Cityzens showed some scary capabilities in attack. They recorded two consecutive 5-0 wins over Newcastle United and Brighton & Hove Albion.
The manager Pep Guardiola is perfectly aware that now his team will focus on the Champions League and the FA Cup – the two competitions which Man City can still win. That’s why the Catalan tactician keeps using his best players in every game – he wants them to be in the best possible shape for these crucial matches which are ahead.
Sergio Aguero remains the big absentee in Manchester City’s squad. The Argentine striker is dealing with a knee injury, so it’s still not clear when he would return on the pitch. City hope that this could happen in the FA Cup and Champions League fixtures.
Bournemouth are three points away from the 17th Watford and the safe zone. The Cherries are having 31 points at the moment, but this is currently not enough for them to remain in the league. Bournemouth won against Leicester City in the previous round, but for their bad luck Watford won as well.
Bournemouth made a truly impressive display against Leicester City at the Vitality Stadium. They were underdogs, but they achieved a crushing 4-1 win over the Foxes. Jamie Vardy opened the score for the visitors, but Stanislas and Solanke turned the game around of the hosts. Meanwhile Leicester’s Johny Evans scored himself an own goal.
Manchester City do not need the points as much as Bournemouth do, but it doesn’t mean that Guardiola’s team is going to just handle the win to the Cherries. Let’s see what kind of approach they will have for this match.