Match Preview

Premier League
Premier League
Saturday 4 December 2021
Kickoff at 17:30 GMT
Vicarage Road, Vicarage Rd, Watford WD18 0ER
UK - Sky Sports
UK Radio - talkSPORT
Live text, audio and stats at mancity.com
Everything you need to know ahead of City's Premier League visit to Vicarage Road.

WHEN AND WHERE

The Premier League clash gets underway on Saturday 4 December, with kick-off at Vicarage Road scheduled for 17:30 (UK).

Viewers in the UK can watch the action live on Sky Sports Main event, Sky Sports Premier League and SkyGO, with our global TV listings at the foot of this page showing where the game is being broadcast around the world, courtesy of LiveSoccerTV.com

MAN CITY APP COVERAGE

The best place to follow every City game is on the official Man City app. You will not miss a beat. 

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Alistair Mann will provide commentary throughout the 90 minutes. 

Minute-by-minute text updates are available in our Matchday Centre, starting at 15:30 (UK).

For those with push notifications turned on, you'll get alerted as soon as the teams are announced and goals go in.  

And our Matchday Live show with special guests will begin just before 16:30 (UK).

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Our special guests will then reconvene for a quick half-time debrief before a more in-depth post-match verdict, including their reaction to the full-time thoughts of Pep Guardiola and, time permitting, a player.

The guests will also answer viewer questions throughout the broadcast, with audience participation actively encouraged on Matchday Live. To get in touch, send a WhatsApp to: +447537186538.

Highlights from the match can be found later in the evening, while a full-match replay will also be available from midnight following the game with a CITY+ subscription.

WATCH: Nissan Goal of the Month: Vote now for November's winner!

TEAM NEWS

Grealish, Foden among five changes for City

Jack Grealish and Phil Foden both start for City against Watford, while Kyle Walker, Aymeric Laporte and Ilkay Gundogan also make welcome returns.

And there was more good news with Kevin De Bruyne returning to first team duty this early evening, with the Belgian playmaker named as a sub.

John Stones has also recovered from a slight knock.

Starting XI

Ederson, Walker, Cancelo, Dias, Laporte, Rodrigo, Gundogan (c), Bernardo, Grealish, Foden, Sterling

Subs: Steffen, Carson, Stones, Ake, Jesus, Zinchenko, De Bruyne, Fernandinho, Mahrez

Formation and possible  tactics

City will play the usual 4-3-3 formation against Watford.

The excellent Walker has been in top form all season and his return means that Joao Cancelo will switch over to left-back.

Either Laporte or Stones are reliable partners for Ruben Dias, but it is Laporte who gets the nod on this occasion.

Rodrigo will have skipper Gundogan back alongside him in midfield with Bernardo continuing his long first team run.

Raheem Sterling deservedly retains his place, with England colleagues Foden and Grealish making up the front three – though who plays where among that trio could change throughout the 90 minutes.

PEP GUARDIOLA PREVIEW

"What (Watford manager Claudio Ranieri) has done is amazing. I admire this type of person and what he’s done, the passion, energy to go there."

"It’ll be a pleasure to see him again, the results against him aren’t always good, against Manchester United they played incredibly well, against Chelsea they did a really good game. Always they are tight and close the results.

"Against Leicester they lost but had more chances, every game it’s there, we have to be careful tomorrow and do our game and another good performance."

Claudio Ranieri Preview

“For my philosophy it is important to attack! I want to attack in every situation, but it is important to play with one, two touches and move quickly. That’s what Manchester City do. It will be very hard but we are ready.

“I’m very confident with my players but of course, I am a very pragmatic manager and I want to take points.

"If you play well in three games and take no points, it’s not good. Now is the moment to get points, we are in the relegation battle and have to react. We have to react every time.”

PREVIOUS MEETING

City cruised to victory in our last league meeting with the Hornets in July 2020 at Vicarage Road.

Raheem Sterling took the game away from the home side before half-time, firing in a rising shot to open the scoring before doubling the advantage by following up his own saved penalty - awarded for a foul on him by Will Hughes.

Phil Foden added a third after Ben Foster had parried a Sterling shot before Aymeric Laporte nodded in from Kevin de Bruyne's free-kick.

City now have a 13 straight wins against the Hornets, during which the aggregate score is 50-6 in City's favour.

WATCH: Watford 0-4 City: Brief highlights

LAST TIME OUT

In City's last game, stunning first half goals from Ruben Dias and Bernardo Silva were enough to earn depleted City a crucial 2-1 Premier League win at Aston Villa.

Despite being shorn of several key players through injury, illness and suspension, Pep Guardiola’s reigning champions produced a sumptuous opening 45 minutes at Villa Park capped off by quite superb goals from Portuguese duo Dias and Silva.

A 47th minute effort from Villa’s Ollie Watkins made for a hard-fought second half.

However, City held firm to deservedly seal our 10th league win of the season and so stay hot on the heels of leaders Chelsea.

FORM GUIDE

Pep Guardiola's side are the form team in the top-flight, winning four consecutive matches in the league, securing a 2-1 away win over Aston Villa last time out.

Watford fell to a 2-1 home defeat at the hands of league-leaders Chelsea in their last game.

City have 32 points from 14 games, whilst Claudio Ranieri's side have 13 points from the same number of fixtures.

TV LISTINGS

Albania SuperSport 4 Digitalb
Andorra RMC Sport 1
Angola DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Argentina Star+
Aruba RUSH
Australia Optus Sport
Austria Sky Go, Sky Sport 1/HD
Bahamas RUSH
Barbados RUSH
Belarus Belarus 5
Belgium VOOsport World 1, Play Sports 3, Play Sports
Benin SuperSport Premier League ROA
Bermuda RUSH
Bolivia Star+
Botswana DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Brazil Star+
British Virgin Islands RUSH
Brunei Astro Go
Bulgaria Nova Sport Bulgaria
Burkina Faso SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Burundi DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Cameroon SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Canada DAZN
Cape Verde DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Cayman Islands RUSH
Central African Republic SuperSport Premier League ROA
Chad SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Chile Star+
China Migu, QQ Sports Live, iQiyi, PPTV Sport China
Colombia Star+
Comoros SuperSport Premier League ROA
Congo DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Congo DR SuperSport Premier League ROA
Costa Rica Sky HD
Cote D'Ivoire DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Curacao RUSH
Czech Republic DIGI GO, Premier Sport
Denmark TV3 MAX, Viaplay Denmark
Djibouti DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Dominica RUSH
Dominican Republic Sky HD, RUSH
Ecuador Star+
El Salvador Sky HD
Equatorial Guinea DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Eritrea SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Estonia TV3 Sport
Ethiopia SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Finland V Sport Football, Elisa Viihde Viaplay
France Canal+ Sport, RMC Sport 1, Free, RMC Sport en direct
French Guiana RUSH
Gabon DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Gambia SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Germany Sky Sport 1/HD, Sky Go, Sky Ticket
Ghana SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Greece Cosmote Sport 1 HD
Grenada RUSH
Guadeloupe RUSH
Guatemala Sky HD
Guinea DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Guinea-Bissau DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Guyana RUSH
Haiti RUSH
Honduras Sky HD
Hungary Digi Sport 1
India Hotstar VIP, JioTV
Indonesia mola.tv, Mola TV, Mola TV App
Ireland Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Sports Premier League, Sky Ultra HD, SKY GO Extra
Italy NOW TV, SKY Go Italia, Sky Sport Football
Jamaica RUSH
Japan DAZN
Kazakhstan Setanta Sports Kazakhstan
Kenya DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Korea Republic SPOTV ON
Kosovo IPKO TVim
Latvia TV3 Sport
Lesotho DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Liberia DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Lithuania TV3 Sport
Luxembourg RMC Sport 1
Macau iQiyi
Madagascar SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Malawi DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Malaysia Astro SuperSport 3, Astro Go
Mali DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Malta TSN2 Malta, GO TV Anywhere
Martinique RUSH
Mauritania DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Mauritius SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now, RMC Sport 1
Mayotte SuperSport Premier League ROA
Mexico Sky HD, Blue To Go Video Everywhere
Monaco RMC Sport 1
Montserrat RUSH
Mozambique DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Namibia SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Netherlands Ziggo Sport 14, Ziggo Sport Voetbal, Ziggo Sport Select
New Zealand Spark Sport
Nicaragua Sky HD
Niger DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Nigeria DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League Nigeria, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Norway TV2 Sport Premium, TV 2 Play
Panama Sky HD
Paraguay Star+
Peru Star+
Poland nc+ GO, Canal+ Sport 2 Poland, Canal+ Sport Online
Portugal Sport TV2, Sport TV Multiscreen
Puerto Rico RUSH
Reunion SuperSport Premier League ROA
Romania Eurosport Player Romania, Eurosport Romania
Russia Okko Sport
Rwanda SuperSport Premier League ROA
Saint Helena SuperSport Premier League ROA
Saint Lucia RUSH
Sao Tome And Principe SuperSport Premier League ROA
Senegal DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Seychelles SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Sierra Leone SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Singapore mio Stadium 108, 102 (HD) mio Stadium
Slovakia Premier Sport, DIGI GO
Somalia SuperSport Premier League ROA
South Africa SuperSport Premier League, DStv App, MáXimo 360, SuperSport Premier League ROA
South Sudan DStv Now
Spain DAZN 1, Movistar+, DAZN
Sudan SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Suriname RUSH
Swaziland DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
Sweden V Sport Football, Viaplay Sweden
Switzerland Canal+ Sport, Sky Sport 1/HD, RMC Sport 1
Tanzania SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Timor-Leste mola.tv, Mola TV
Togo SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
Trinidad and Tobago RUSH
Turkey S Sport+, S Sport
Turks and Caicos Islands RUSH
U.S. Virgin Islands RUSH
Uganda DStv Now, SuperSport Premier League ROA
United Kingdom Sky Sports Premier League, Sky Sports Main Event, BBC Radio Manchester,SKY GO Extra, Sky Ultra HD
United States NBC, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo, nbcsports.com, UNIVERSO, UNIVERSO NOW, NBC Sports App, Peacock
Uruguay Star+
Venezuela Star+
Zambia SuperSport Premier League ROA
Zimbabwe SuperSport Premier League ROA, DStv Now
*Don't see your country or favourite channel listed? Let us know and we will include it.

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Pep Guardiola admits he is a huge admirer of Watford boss Claudio Ranieri. Read more.

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