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Pep Guardiola face another mastermind in Slavisa Jokanovic


Man City have a great opportunity to take three precious points when they host newly promoted Fulham on Saturday. The Citizens have already lost ground to league leaders Liverpool and it looks as though they could be in for a tougher title battle this season. But Jurgen Klopp’s men have to negotiate an extremely difficult trip to London to face Tottenham, while City should be able to blow Fulham away. The Cottagers have conceded nine goals in four Premiership matches so far this season, and Man City should be able to rip through that leaky defence.

The onus is on Pep Guardiola’s men to keep winning and maintain the pressure on their title rivals. Chelsea have started the new campaign in fine form under new boss Maurizio Sarri, and they have a habit of winning the league every other year, so they could be a genuine threat this time around. Eden Hazard is in inspired form, and the Blues are expected to crush Cardiff on Saturday and maintain their 100% start to the season. Liverpool also look strong after spending a fortune on new players in the summer, fixing many glaring issues with their starting 11, so it should be an interesting season.

No team has successfully defended the Premiership title crown since Man Utd in 2009, back in the days of Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney and Carlos Tevez. If you want to place some action check out BetOnline where you can find great Premiership odds but first read their review and you will see at their site that Man City are still the clear, odds-on favourites to win the title. They secured it in record-breaking fashion last term, and they still look streets ahead of their domestic peers.

The really encouraging thing for City fans is that this squad looks equipped to deal with injuries to anyone. Most teams would be plunged into crisis if they lost a player of Kevin De Bruyne’s quality for a significant chunk of the campaign, but City have rallied impressively. David Silva remains a creative genius of the highest order, and players like Bernardo Silva and Riyad Mahrez can unlock even the tightest of defences.

Man City have spent a lot of money over the past few years, but they have invested wisely. Man Utd have also thrown around a lot of cash, and they look to be in dreadful shape, whereas City have at least two really good players in every position. If Spurs lost Harry Kane for several months they would be in serious trouble, ditto Chelsea with Hazard or N’Golo Kante. But City look as though they could cover injury to anyone, even Sergio Aguero, Vincent Kompany or David Silva. They have a fantastic, dynamic squad, and there is plenty more to come from players like Leroy Sane, Gabriel Jesus and Phil Foden.

Fulham are the perfect sort of team for Man City to play, as they do not sit back like Newcastle. They have talented attackers and they want to get the ball down and play football, which is admirable, but it leaves them ripe for conceding. They let a two-goal lead slip against Brighton last time out, drawing 2-2, and that shows naivety from the newly promoted side. They are highly unlikely to be relegated, as they invested in some excellent players over the summer, but this really is a team that Man City should be beating, particularly at home. As such, they are just 1/8 to do so with the bookmakers, and they should be able to record a comfortable victory.

Guardiola notes that playing newly promoted sides is never easy, and City have already slipped up against Wolves, but now is the time for focus and the sort of clinical performance we saw so many times last season.

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