Manchester City could reclaim top spot in the Premier League and put the pressure back on Arsenal with a win against Fulham today. Pep Guardiola’s side have recovered from their loss to Liverpool and were afforded the luxury of resting a number of players during their midweek win over Sevilla, so head into this one in good shape.
There’s also the added boost of having a certain Erling Haaland available. Having missed the last two games, the star striker has been back in training and will likely play in at least some capacity. Fulham, meanwhile, have exceeded expectations since their return to the Premier League.
Largely written off before the season, Marco Silva’s side look much harder to beat than previous Fulham teams, although face a mighty challenge to overcome the champions at the Etihad Stadium. Follow all of the action with Standard Sport’s dedicated match blog!
Head to head (h2h) history and results
Manchester City wins: 37
Fulham wins: 17
No Mitrovic for Fulham
Marco Silva has confirmed Aleksandar Mitrovic is suffering with an ankle injury, albeit not a serious one.
Pep Guardiola’s pre match message
“It’s always great to play at our home with our people behind us. I love being here and I know the players do too.”
Confirmed Man City lineup
Who Man City could face in the Champions League last-16 draw
Who can Manchester City face in the Champions League last-16?
Teams from the same country and group are ruled out for this stage of the competition – but not for the quarter-finals onwards.
So Borussia Dortmund and Liverpool will not be handed to Guardiola and Co.
However, plenty of decent teams finished as runners-up in the group stage…
Man City’s possible last-16 opponents: Eintracht Frankfurt, PSG, Inter Milan, AC Milan, RB Leipzig, Club Brugge.
Silva hails ‘outstanding’ Pereira and makes Fulham transfer admission
Marco Silva hailed Andreas Pereira for silencing the doubters with his superb Fulham form and revealed he explored signing the midfielder last season.
Pereira set up goals for Aleksandar Mitrovic and Bobby Decordova-Reid as the Cottagers climbed to seventh with a 3-2 victory over struggling Leeds on Sunday.
Eyebrows were raised when Silva paid an initial £10million to sign Pereira from Manchester United in the summer, where he had made just 45 Premier League appearances across an eight-year spell that included four stints out on loan.
However, the 26-year-old appears to have found a happy, permanent home in west London, with four assists and a goal so far this term to help Silva’s men make a flying start to their top-flight return.
“He has been outstanding this season,” Silva said. “I know a lot of people had doubts when I decided to sign him but I knew his qualities and his character.
“Even last season we had a conversation about his future but it wasn’t the right moment for him to join us. He’s a key player on and off the ball and with set-pieces. Two assists this afternoon. A top professional who is enjoying himself at the moment in a white shirt. The three midfielders all played an amazing game today.”
Guardiola responds to Zlatan Ibrahimovic
The two certainly have history…