There’s always a question of how teams will react to a three month break but it didn’t bother Manchester City one bit when they swept aside Arsenal and they can do the same to Burnley this evening.
City only need one chance to impose themselves on a game and when Pablo Mari went off injured – at a point where Arsenal were playing reasonably well – they wasted no time in ruthlessly exploiting replacement David Luiz. His horror mistake assisted Raheem Sterling for the opener, before his challenge on Riyad Mahrez (which resulted in his sending off) allowed Kevin De Bryune to seal what would be a deserved victory.
City were given a helping hand by Luiz’s errors, but they were worthy winners – Infogol had the expected goals count at 2.92 – 0.28 in City’s favour after 90 minutes – and the way City finished the game will give Pep Guardiola great encouragement. Kevin De Bruyne was outstanding in the middle of the park and rightly earned all the plaudits for his performance, although Riyad Mahrez was a constant threat down the left as he had been before the suspension, and once Raheem Sterling scored Arsenal struggled to handle his movement.
David Silva and İlkay Gündoğan also had a firm grip on matters in midfield and if they are chosen again, then they ought to benefit hugely for match fitness; However, with Rodri, Bernardo Silva, and Fernandinho all pushing for starts (and Phil Foden having come off the bench for a nice goal) City are bursting with options.
Man City v Burnley
20:00 Sky One / Sky Sports Premier League / Sky Sports Main Event / Sky Sports Ultra HD / Pick
HEAD TO HEAD RECORD
(Maximum 10 matches, since 2010)
DEC 2019 PREMIER LEAGUE Burnley 1-4 Manchester City
APR 2019 PREMIER LEAGUE Burnley 0-1 Manchester City
JAN 2019 FA CUP Manchester City 5-0 Burnley
OCT 2018 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 5-0 Burnley
FEB 2018 PREMIER LEAGUE Burnley 1-1 Manchester City
JAN 2018 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 4-1 Burnley
JAN 2018 FA CUP Manchester City 4-1 Burnley
OCT 2017 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 3-0 Burnley
JAN 2017 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 2-1 Burnley
NOV 2016 PREMIER LEAGUE Burnley 1-2 Manchester City
MAR 2015 PREMIER LEAGUE Burnley 1-0 Manchester City
Burnley have to be respected – they went into the break having hit their best form of the season, going unbeaten in seven games – no mean feat given that they played Leicester, Manchester United, Arsenal and Tottenham in that time. However, much of that success came thanks to a key core of players who are all absent here. Ashley Barnes, Chris Wood and Johann Berg Gudmundsson are all sidelined which takes a huge amount of the attacking talent out of Sean Dyche’s men, and it’s entirely possible that the rest will need the outing based on the opening games we’ve seen.
City average 3.52 goals per game in the Premier League, and the 6/5 on them passing the two goal handicap is of enough interest, along with a bash at 3-0 for the correct score.
PROFIT/LOSS SINCE JAN 1 2017: PROFIT 271.47 points
(Excluding Cheltenham 2021 antepost, Premier League ante-post, Six Nations Outright, Six Nations Specials, Cameron Brown Football Bets, Derby bet)