Friday, August 17, 2018

Prediction: Stoke City vs Manchester City

Verdict: Stoke +2

Best Odds: 7/4

Bookmaker: Bet 365

Manchester City will aim on moving a step closer to Premier League glory when they travel to Stoke City on Monday night. We make our predictions on the clash from the Bet 365 stadium.

Stoke City

Even though Stoke City are sitting dangerously in the bottom three of the Premier League, their recent performances have caused reason for optimisim. Paul Lambert’s men haven’t won in five games, but there’s been enough evidence to suggest they could put up a good fight for survival. It is now only one defeat in their last six games. However, there’s also been four draws in this sequence, and, if they want to climb the table, they will need to start picking up three points more frequently. Defensively, the Potters have looked more sold, with only four goals conceded in their last six matches. But, they are about to face a visit from the league’s top scorers, and very certain champions. Another major concern for Lambert will be the fact that his team have got a very tough run in between now and the end of the season. Everton, Arsenal, Tottenham, and Liverpool are all poised to face the relegation candidates in the next month.

Team News

Striker Mame Diouf is set to miss out after injuring his shoulder in the 0-0 draw with Southampton.

Kevin Wimmer and Saido Berahino may return to the match-day squad.

Manchester City

It seems only a matter of time before Manchester City are crowned Premier League champions. Sitting 13 points clear of second-placed Manchester United, the Citizens know that four more victories should be enough to win the league. Pep Guardiola’s men suffered their first home defeat since 2016 against Basle in midweek. It seems that the Manchester club may have just taken their foot off the gas away from the Etihad since the start of 2018. An away defeat to Liverpool was followed by a 1-1 draw against Burnley, and an FA Cup exit to League 1 Wigan Athletic. Guardiola should be confident of beating a Stoke side who are sitting in the relegation zone, though, and he definitely won’t want to suffer two disappointing defeats in a row. There’s no doubt that most of his star players will come back into the squad after missing the Basle game. This will certainly make City favourites for victory at the Bet 365 Stadium on Monday night.

Team News

David Silva is available after missing the clash with Basle due to personal reasons.

Meanwhile, City will assess the fitness of Raheem Sterling and Fernandinho.

Sergio Aguero could miss out after hurting his knee in training.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Stoke have kept a clean sheet in three of their last seven Premier League games against the Citizens, but have conceded 19 goals in the four other matches
  • Manchester City have only won two of their last nine visits to the Bet 365 Stadium (D5 L2)
  • The Potters have only won one of their last 15 games against teams starting the day at the top of the table
  • The team starting at the top of the league haven’t lost against a team in the relegation zone since April 201
  • No side have been trailing longer in games than Stoke City this season (9 hours, 10 minutes)

Conclusion

Stoke have been hard to beat of late, and it seems that City have taken their foot off the gas slightly. We believe Guardiola’s men will still win the match, but it could be tighter than people expect.

Verdict: Stoke +2

Best Odds: 7/4

Bookmaker: Bet 365

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ashley Randall


Ash is a freelance football writer who lives, breathes and dreams the beautiful game. A lifelong Wolverhampton Wanderers season ticket holder, if he isn't at Molineux then he will be watching any game on television that he can set his eyes on. Producing work for various football websites and publications, Ash has also written for regional newspapers and global magazines.

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