Mens Team

Gundogan returns as Guardiola makes six changes

Gundogan returns as Guardiola makes six changes
Fit again Ilkay Gundogan starts for Manchester City against Bournemouth this evening, as one of six changes made by Pep Guardiola.

Gundogan missed the 5-0 win over Brighton and Hove Albion due to a lack of fitness, but returns to face the Cherries in an entirely changed midfield three, which also includes David Silva and Fernandinho.

Ederson, Kyle Walker, Benjamin Mendy, Bernardo Silva and Gabriel Jesus are the only players to retain their place in the starting lineup.

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Saturday's hat-trick hero Raheem Sterling drops to the bench, as do Kevin De Bruyne and Aymeric Laporte.

Claudio Bravo misses out through injury, whilst Joao Cancelo remains short of match fitness.

Lineups

CITY XI: Ederson, Walker, Stones, Otamendi, Mendy, Fernandinho, Gundogan, D. Silva (C), Bernardo, Foden, Jesus.

SUBS: Carson, Sterling, Zinchenko, Laporte, Rodrigo, De Bruyne, Mahrez, Garcia, Doyle.

BOURNEMOUTH XI: Ramsdale, Stacey, Cook (C), Kelly, Rico, Gosling, Lerma, Billing, Stanislas, King, Solanke.

SUBS: Boruc, Simpson, Surman, L. Cook, Brooks, H. Wilson, Danjuma, C.Wilson, Surridge.

Maintaining momentum

City have never lost to Bournemouth and whilst on paper there is nothing to play for tonight, there is no chance of Guardiola’s men letting up.

When football returned, the boss was unequivocal about his aims; secure European football as quickly as possible so we could focus on our remaining FA Cup and Champions League games.

After two brilliant attacking displays Guardiola will want more of the same to ensure City go into Saturday’s FA Cup semi-final against Arsenal in top form.

Ref watch

Lee Mason is the man in the middle today.

It is the seventh time has taken charge of a City game this season, with his previous matches including the Carabao Cup final and most recently, our 2-0 FA Cup win over Newcastle United.

He’s issued 19 yellow cards in those games and awarded two penalties, both of which we converted.

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Stats and facts

  • City have won all nine of our Premier League games against Bournemouth by an aggregate score of 28-4. It is the best 100% record one opponent has against another in English top-flight history.
  • Bournemouth have never beaten us in any division (D2, L13).
  • We have scored 16 goals and conceded just two in our last four meetings with the Cherries at the Etihad Stadium.
  • We have won 5-0 in our previous two games. We last scored five or more goals in three consecutive matches in September 2017.
  • We have won our past five home league games, scoring 19 goals without conceding. We haven't won six in a row at home in the top-flight without letting in a goal since March 1902.
  • Raheem Sterling has scored in all but one of his eight Premier League appearances against Bournemouth - his total of nine league goals against the Cherries is more than he has managed against any other side.
  • Sterling has scored 27 goals in all competitions this season, more than any other Premier League player.
  • De Bruyne has been directly involved in an unrivalled 29 Premier League goals this season, with 11 goals and 18 assists.
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