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Media: City can maintain title challenge

MEDIA WATCH: City are better equipped to mount a title challenge this season than last

MEDIA WATCH: City are better equipped to mount a title challenge this season than last

With the international break in full swing, there is less news about Manchester City than usual across the media this morning.

We’ve had to dig deep to find some but we’ve managed it.

Let’s start with Simon Bajkowski’s piece for the Manchester Evening News which looks at reasons why City are better equipped to maintain a title challenge this season than last. 

He looks at five factors, including City’s ability to deal with absences more comfortably.

“City were badly hurt by absences last season,” Bajkowski writes. “Vincent Kompany was a big hole that the defence never filled, Ilkay Gundogan offered something nobody else could provide while even suspensions for Sergio Aguero and Fernandinho proved costly.

“Injuries to Aguero and Benjamin Mendy will test the Blues going forward but they have already accommodated for their loss at Chelsea, as well as coping without Kompany, Kyle Walker, Raheem Sterling and Yaya Toure for various games.”

Meanwhile, former Chelsea defender Graeme Le Saux believes City will win the title. 

Quoted in the Express, Le Saux says it will be a tight race but backs Pep Guardiola's side to get over the line ahead of Manchester United and Chelsea. 

“I said at the beginning of the season that I thought both Manchester clubs would be fighting it out at the top and I still think Man City just edge it," he says.

“That being said all the top clubs are in with a shout.

"And I think the key factor is how they manage their squads during periods when some of their ‘irreplaceable’ players are injured or suspended.”

And, finally, a report in the Sun says City’s squad will do more travelling that any other Premier League side during the international break.

City have 15 players away on international duty, with Liverpool the only Premier League side who can match that number.

And research suggests it is City who will clock up the most air miles.

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“Manchester City have been hit the hardest of all the Premier League clubs by their stars jetting off for international duty,” Duncan Wright rights.

“Pep Guardiola has assembled a glittering squad packed full of national team players all looking to book a place in the World Cup next summer.

“But in doing so he has built a group have are having to jet all over the world to represent their countries in the final round of Russia 2018 qualifiers.

“City have no less than 15 players away on international duty - a number equalled only by Liverpool.

“But the miles their stars have to travel total up to a staggering 106,873, well more than the 71,023 miles Liverpool players will clock up.

“So one of the biggest jobs Guardiola has next week when his squad report back for duty is ensuring they are all clear of jet-lag and tiredness in time to face Stoke on October 14.”

That's all for today, Blues. Join us tomorrow - same time, same place. 

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