Men's Team

Haaland handed league bow as Gundogan and Foden return for West Ham trip

Erling Haaland is handed his Premier League debut as City make two changes from the side that began the Community Shield for our league opener at West Ham.

Ilkay Gundogan and Phil Foden come into the starting line up with Bernardo Silva and Riyad Mahrez reverting to the bench from the side that lost out to Liverpool in last weekend’s traditional curtain raiser.

Summer signing Haaland meanwhile will make his long-awaited City league bow as Pep Guardiola’s reigning champions seek to get our title defence off to a winning start at the London Stadium.

Fellow close season signings Stefan Ortega Moreno, Kalvin Phillips and Julian Alvarez are all amongst the substitutes.

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Also named on the bench is youngster Rico Lewis who impressed on our summer tour to the USA.

Teams

West Ham XI: Fabianski, Coufal, Zouma, Cresswell, Johnson, Rice (c), Soucek, Lanzini, Bowen, Fornals, Antonio

SUBS: Areola, Randolph, Ashby, Coventry, Downes, Okoflex, Vlasic, Benrahma, Scamacca

City XI: Ederson, Walker, Dias, Ake, Cancelo, Rodrigo, De Bruyne, Gundogan (c), Grealish, Haaland, Foden

SUBS: Ortega Moreno, Phillips, Stones, Bernardo, Alvarez, Mahrez, Lewis, Palmer, Wilson-Esbrand

Formation

It looks like the tried and trusted 4-3-3 formation for City this afternoon.

With Ederson the familiar figure in goal, the Brazilian keeper will be shielded by a back four of Kyle Walker, Ruben Dias, Nathan Ake and Joao Cancelo.

Rodrigo is set to be deployed as the midfield anchor with Kevin De Bruyne and Gundogan - who is handed the captain's armband - also in the engine room.

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Meanwhile, Foden, Haaland and Jack Gealish are expected to form our attacking trident.

Opening gambit

City have met West Ham on the opening weekend of a top-flight season on three previous occasions.

And by way of encouraging omens, the Hammers have all lost three of those matches without scoring a goal.

We last opened the season away to West Ham on the opening day of the 2019/20 campaign, roaring to a 5-0 success at the London Stadium.

Hopefully we can extend that impressive record in the capital this afternoon!

Match stats

Head-to-head

• City are unbeaten in their past 13 Premier League meetings with West Ham (W10, D3).
• However, Pep Guardiola's side have drawn on their last three visits to the London Stadium in all competitions.

Manchester City

• Manchester City have lost just one of their last 28 Premier League games (W23, D4), and are unbeaten in their last 12 (W9, D3).
• City suffered a 1-0 away defeat to Spurs in their opening league match last term - it was their only away loss in the top flight last season.
Jack Grealish has three goals and two assists in six Premier League appearances against West Ham.
Erling Haaland scored a hat-trick on his Champions League debut for Red Bull Salzburg and another treble on his Bundesliga debut as a substitute for Borussia Dortmund.
• Alf Inge Haaland, Erling's father, made his final Premier League appearance for Manchester City against West Ham in April 2001.
• Ilkay Gundogan is one goal away from 50 for City and Bernardo is two goals away from 50.

West Ham

• West Ham won last season's opener 4-2 at Newcastle, ending a run of five consecutive losses on the opening day.
• The Hammers hold the Premier League record for the most opening-day defeats with 14.
• David Moyes' side took 10 points out of a possible 12 at home against the top four last season.
• The Hammers scored in all of their 19 top-flight home games last term. The only other time they have achieved this was in 1926-27.

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