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City make six changes for Latics trip

CUP CRACKER: Ilkay Gundogan congratulates team-mate Leroy Sane after his early strike

CUP CRACKER: Ilkay Gundogan congratulates team-mate Leroy Sane after his early strike

City make six changes for tonight’s FA Cup fifth round tie with Wigan Athletic.

Claudio Bravo returns to the side for his ninth appearance of the campaign while Danilo, John Stones, Aymeric Laporte, Leroy Sane and David Silva all return.

Dropping to the bench are Ederson, Kyle Walker, Vincent Kompany and Kevin De Bruyne with Nicolas Otamendi and Raheem Sterling not in the 18-man squad.

Starting XI:

Team: Bravo, Danilo, Stones, Laporte, Delph, Fernandinho, Bernardo, D Silva (c), Sane, Gundogan, Aguero

Subs: Ederson, Foden, De Bruyne, Walker, Zinchenko, Kompany, Diaz

Formation:

Safe to assume it is an evolving 4-3-3, aimed at stretching the Wigan defence to find space and gaps for the attacking three to roam into.

 

RETURN: John Stones partners Aymeric Laporte for the first time tonight

 

Wigan XI:

Two attacking teams…

City and Wigan Athletic have both entertained and scored goals this season.

The Latics have League One’s meanest defence having shipped just 18 goals this campaign, but while Paul Cook’s side have dumped Bournemouth and West Ham out of this campaign’s FA Cup run, it’s fair to say they haven’t faced an attack quite as potent as City’s.

Latics have dropped to second in League One having lost to Southend and Blackpool, but have two games in hand over their nearest rivals.

Striker Will Grigg has indeed been on fire for Wigan this season, with the Northern Ireland star rediscovering the form that made him a cult hero two years ago for club and country.

His 15 goals in 38 games suggest he will be a handful for the City defence.

Former United midfielder Nick Powell has 11 goals from 28 starts and is arguably the Latics’ best player and the club did well to hand on to their talisman after a deadline day bid from Brighton & Hove Albion was rejected.

Sergio on the cusp…

Two goals tonight and Sergio Aguero will complete his double century for the Blues.

Kun has 198 to date and will look to set a new goal-scoring benchmark for the Club against Wigan.

 

GOAL MACHINE: Can Sergio Aguero make it 200 for City?

 

Stats and facts

The Blues have won four, drawn four and lost four of the 12 visits to the DW Stadium.

City and Wigan are meeting in the FA Cup for the fifth time – three of the past four ties have ended 1-0 either way. Currently, both sides have two wins each in the competition.

The Blues first met the Latics in 1971 in a FA Cup tie at Maine Road – Wigan were then a non-League side and were beaten by a Colin Bell goal.

The Latics have won six FA Cup ties in a row at the DW Stadium knocking out three top flight sides in Bournemouth, Crystal Palace and West Ham United and have lost just one out of their last 10 matches against higher league sides.

This game pits the best league scorers in the country (City on 79) against Wigan Athleticwho have the best defensive record (18).

The winners of tonight’s game will host Southampton in the quarter-finals.

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DEADLOCK BROKEN: Ilkay Gundogan celebrates heading City into an early lead.

Manchester City face Wigan Athletic on Monday evening, in the second of three consecutive cup ties.

Here's four things to consider ahead of the FA Cup encounter.