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Premier League

Sep 14, 2019 at 5.30pm UK
NorwichNorwich City
Man CityManchester City
McLean (18'), Cantwell (28'), Pukki (50')
FT(HT: 2-1)
Aguero (45'), Rodri (88')

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Preview: Norwich City vs. Manchester City - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Norwich City vs. Manchester City - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Saturday's Premier League clash between Norwich City and Manchester City, including predictions, team news and head-to-head records.
By | 1mo

When Norwich City looked at the fixture list for the opening month or so of the Premier League season, the visit of two top-six sides to Carrow Road would have stood out as an encapsulation of the step up required following their promotion last season.

The impressively smooth win they achieved over Newcastle United would have been earmarked as a potential three points, but the test they gave Chelsea bodes promisingly for a match against the champions.

While Norwich are second from bottom, Manchester City sit second, chasing Liverpudlian smoke thanks to their would-be nemeses' immaculate start to the season. Even if this game proves a mismatch, it should be entertaining.

Norwich City

Although the Canaries have lost three of their four matches on their return to the Premier League, their performances at Carrow Road are an early source of encouragement.

Having eased past Newcastle United 3-1 in that opening home match, they ran Chelsea close on their way to a 3-2 defeat against the Europa League holders.

Todd Cantwell and Teemu Pukki provided the equalisers as they held the visitors 2-2 at the interval, only for Tammy Abraham to score a second-half winner.

That defeat to Chelsea was Norwich's first home league defeat of the calendar year, and they have scored at least two goals in all but one of their matches on that run.

On his first season in the Premier League, Pukki has proven he can continue the form that made him last season's Championship top-scorer.

The Finland dangerman scored a hat-trick to demolish Newcastle and has found the net in three of his side's first four matches, although he was unable to prevent them slipping to a 2-0 defeat at West Ham United last time out.

His appearance at the London Stadium was Pukki's 50th in a Norwich shirt, during which time he has scored 35 goals.

He was on the scoresheet for his country in a 2-1 defeat at home to Italy in the break - making him one of several Norwich players in action during the week.

Among them, Jamal Lewis and Michael McGovern also suffered frustration with Northern Ireland, who lost 2-0 in their group-topping encounter at home to Germany.

Recent form: LWLL
Recent form (all competitions): LWLLL

Manchester City

The familiar prospect of City and Liverpool making their moves at different times of the weekend returns on Saturday, with the Reds welcoming Newcastle United in the early kick off.

City start the day two points behind their main rivals, knowing that any unexpected slip-up at Anfield would give them the opportunity to reach the top of the table once again.

They have been on menacing away form so far, thrashing West Ham United 5-0 on the opening day before cruising to a 3-1 win at Bournemouth.

A 2-1 defeat at Newcastle United at the end of January remains the only time they have dropped points on their travels this year, although they were held by Tottenham in their first game of the season at the Etihad Stadium.

That 2-2 draw was followed up with a confident 4-0 win over Brighton & Hove Albion, including a goal in either half for Sergio Aguero.

There was little let-up in the performances of City's myriad stars during their enforced hiatus from domestic action as they shone on international duty.

Striker Raheem Sterling scored one and set up three goals as England stormed to a 5-1 lead against Kosovo before conceding two second-half goals in a surprisingly close-run victory.

Bernardo Silva set up two goals as Portugal beat Lithuania 5-1 and Oleksandr Zinchenko scored his second goal in as many games for Ukraine in a 2-2 with Nigeria in a friendly match in Dnipro.

Kevin De Bruyne was also sensational in Belgium's midfield, playing a part in all of their goals as they breezed past Scotland 4-0.

Recent form: WDWW

Team News

Norwich coach Daniel Farke has concerns in defence, where Christoph Zimmermann and Tim Klose have both been ruled out.

The City boss will be hoping Grant Hanley, who has had a groin issue, will be available to bolster his numbers at the back.

Ibrahim Amadou, signed on a season-long loan from Sevilla in August, could also be an option in defence.

The Frenchman is usually deployed as a defensive midfielder, so he could also replace Tom Trybull, who has an ankle injury.

Aymeric Laporte is the most glaring absence for City after the defender suffered a painful-looking injury as he slipped on the turf during the victory over Brighton.

Laporte had to be stretchered off, leaving coach Pep Guardiola with a headache given his lack of available senior centre-backs.

John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi are options to replace the Frenchman, but Fernandinho is the most likely deputy.

Midfielder Ilkay Gundogan is a doubt after leaving Germany's squad through illness before the Northern Ireland win, but defender Benjamin Mendy could be among the substitutes as he advances his return from a knee problem.

Spain stalwart David Silva's retirement from internationals could mean the City captain will be fresher than some of his teammates, potentially ensuring a start for the creative midfielder.

Norwich possible starting lineup:
Krul; Aarons, Godfrey, Hanley, Lewis; Amadou, Leitner; Buendia, Stiepermann, Cantwell; Pukki

Man City possible starting lineup:
Ederson; Walker, Otamendi, Fernandinho, Zinchenko; De Bruyne, Rodri, David Silva; Bernardo Silva, Aguero, Sterling

Head To Head

An upset in Norwich's favour would give them their 10th all-time win against City, improving their unpromising record of nine victories in the 68 meetings between these clubs.

They have won only one of their last 13 matches against City, although that was a memorable 3-2 win at the Etihad Stadium in May 2012, when their victims finished a distant 11 points behind champions Manchester United in the Premier League table.

Norwich have frequently pushed City at Carrow road since a 6-1 hammering the previous year, including a hat-trick for Carlos Tevez and an Aguero double.

In their three most recent matches here, City won 4-3 in 2012 before 0-0 draws in 2014 and 2016.

We say: Norwich 1-3 Man City

Norwich have already shown their mettle at home in the Premier League, but the visit of Manchester City is routinely a novelty rather than a serious contest for promoted sides.

Even with a few injury problems, City have an abundance of depth, and that should help them see off City's spirit in the same manner they did at Bournemouth before the break.

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