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Media Watch: Ndombele on City radar?

MEDIA WATCH: All the pre-match Wolves discussion, plus more transfer rumours

MEDIA WATCH: All the pre-match Wolves discussion, plus more transfer rumours

With Manchester City preparing to face Wolves at the Etihad Stadium this evening, there’s plenty of pre-match discussion across this morning’s back pages.

And, of course, with transfer gossip front and centre of everyone’s mind this month, there’s plenty of that to consider, too.

Sam Lee of Goal has penned an update on City's transfer plans, in which he says activity in January is unlikely after Pep Guardiola's repeated assertion we will not be bringing anyone in this month.

But Lee says plans are afoot for summer deals, with Lyon's Tanguy Ndombele on the watch-list. 

“Goal understands that City have been impressed with the 22-year-old’s form so far this season, especially his performances against them in the Champions League, and he remains a viable option for the coming months," Lee writes

“Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas said in October, "I can't guarantee that we'll be able to keep Ndombele or [Houssem] Aouar next summer."

“In fact, Aouar himself is of interest to City. The 20-year-old is a versatile midfielder who has often been stationed alongside Ndombele in a deep-lying role, but can also play further forward.

“Guardiola and Aouar are said to be mutual admirers, too, meaning City could have an advantage over other sides if it comes to a bidding war.”

READ: City v Wolves | Talking Points

READ: City v Wolves | Pep press conference 

On to tonight’s game, then, and the BBC’s Mark Lawrenson expects a comfortable City win.

“I think Wolves will go to the Etihad Stadium in confident mood, but I just see Manchester City kicking on now,” he writes. “The blip they had over Christmas seems a long time ago already.

“Prediction: 3-0”

Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo says the 1-1 draw played out between the reverse fixture earlier this season was a crucial moment for his side’s belief they belong in the Premier League.

"That was a very important moment, it made us realise we were ready to compete in the Premier League. We put our standards high,” he says.

"We have been doing well, we have had bad moments, and we want to find the consistency. There's always something to improve on."

The Express and Star’s Wolves correspondent, Joe Edwards, says Wolves has made slight alterations to tbheir system since the game at Molineux in August, something City will need to be prepared for.

“Wolves have used a tweaked formation to good effect,” he says. “Teams had got used to their 3-4-3 formation, so Nuno has added another option in a 3-5-2. Against Liverpool in the Cup last time out, for example, Wolves went with a midfield three of Leander Dendoncker, Ruben Neves and Joao Moutinho.

“Dendoncker and Neves were slightly more reserved, with Moutinho floating between the lines. Morgan Gibbs-White has also played in that free role, so it will be interesting to see which Nuno deploys as he tends to flit between the two.”

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And, finally, the Manchester Evening News’ panel of City writers have had their say on who should start Monday’s big game.

Simon Bajkowski says Guardiola’s biggest selection dilemma is likely to come in midfield.

“The biggest issue - one that the manager would love to have every week but hasn't this season - is which two to play out of David Silva, Kevin De Bruyne and Bernardo Silva (and there's also Ilkay Gundogan to consider!),” he writes.

“All are finally fit. For the first time in a while, City have options but I would not be surprised to see the same XI that beat Liverpool given Kompany and Aguero are expected to come minor issues and De Bruyne's fitness still needs to be carefully managed after so long out.

“Simon's XI: Ederson, Danilo, Stones, Kompany, Laporte, Bernardo, Fernandinho, David Silva, Sané, Aguero, Sterling.”

That’s all for this morning’s Media Watch – but stay with us throughout the day as we continue to bring you all the build-up ahead of tonight’s game.

And don’t forget, you can follow the game LIVE with minute-by-minute updates in our Matchday Centre, which kicks off at 6pm.

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