Relegation-threatened Everton are all set to host league leaders Manchester City as they look to stay outside of the drop zone.

17th-placed Everton will host Manchester City on Sunday. The visitors will look to make it 11 wins in a row in the Premier League and extend their lead at the top of the table. Meanwhile, the home team will look to make it two wins in a row after having won their last league outing. A positive result is a must for Everton as they look to maintain their position outside of the relegation zone.

Everton stunned Brighton & Hove Albion in their recent Premier League fixture with a dominant display, led by Abdoulaye Doucoure and Dwight McNeil, who both scored braces. Although Everton had been winless in their previous seven games, they proved their critics wrong with an emphatic win.

However, Everton still find themselves in 17th place, and a loss to Manchester City could see them slip back into the relegation zone. Despite this, Everton will be buoyed by their recent form and will look to continue their scoring run as they face the league leaders.

Manchester City, meanwhile, are coming off the back of a Champions League draw against Real Madrid. But they have also had some nervy moments in the Premier League, particularly in their 2-1 victory over Leeds United.

They currently hold a one-point lead over Arsenal in the league table and will be looking to extend that gap with a win over Everton. Manchester City cannot afford to be complacent as they look to maintain their title challenge, with Arsenal hot on their heels.

In the reverse fixture, the two teams played out a 1-1 draw. Although Manchester City dropped points against Everton earlier in the season, they have won their last five games at Goodison Park. And, they will be hoping for a positive result. The Hard Tackle takes a closer look at this fixture and tries to predict the tactics they could use.

Team News & Tactics

Everton

Sean Dyche will be without the services of Seamus Coleman, Andros Townsend, Dele Alli, Ben Godfrey and Ruben Vinagre, who are all out injured. The Everton boss is expected to start with the 4-3-3 formation, where Jordan Pickford will be in goal.

Nathan Patterson and Vitaliy Mykolenko will once again start as the full-backs. Yerry Mina will partner James Tarkowski in the heart of the defence. The back four will have a tough task of keeping a star-studded Manchester City attack at bay.

Idrissa Gueye will start as the holding midfielder, and he will have the support of James Garner and Abdoulaye Doucoure. Gueye and Doucoue will do the majority of the defensive duties while Garner will look to move further up the pitch and link up with forwards. Alex Iwobi and Dwight McNeil will start out wide as the wingers. Meanwhile, Dominic Calvert-Lewin will be leading the attack.

Probable Lineup (4-3-4): Pickford; Patterson, Tarkowski, Mina, Mykolenko; Garner, Gueye, Doucoure; Iwobi, Calvert-Lewin, McNeil

Everton vs Manchester City

Manchester City

While Pep Guardiola would have loved to make whole changes to the starting eleven that started against Real Madrid, he cannot really risk starting a second-string starting XI as they do not really have that big a lead at the top of the table. However, we could still see a few changes given the depth of their squad.

Guardiola will be without the services of Nathan Ake for this fixture. The Dutch defender is feeling much better but he is unlikely to be risked here given that the second leg of the UCL is just days away. Manchester City is expected to start with the 3-4-2-1 formation, where Brazilian goalkeeper Ederson Moraes will be in goal.

Manuel Akanji, Ruben Dias and Aymeric Laporte will form the back three. Riyad Mahrez and Jack Grealish will start out wide as the wing-backs. While their primary role will be to join the attack, the duo will also drop back to help out their defence when needed.

Rico Lewis will pair up with Rodri in the centre of the park. Meanwhile, Julian Alvarez and Phil Foden could feature as the attacking midfielders. And, star striker Erling Haaland is expected to be leading the line once again.

Probable Lineup (3-4-2-1): Ederson; Akanji, Dias, Laporte; Mahrez, Lewis, Rodri, Grealish; Foden, Alvarez; Haaland

Everton vs Manchester City

Key Stats

  • Manchester City have a better historical record against Everton, with 78 wins in 194 matches.
  • Everton have only won once in their last 19 Premier League matches against Manchester City.
  • Manchester City have won their last five Premier League away matches against Everton.
  • Everton managed to draw 1-1 with Manchester City in the reverse fixture this season.
  • The home team could win consecutive Premier League games for the first time since October 2022.

Player to Watch

Phil Foden

Embed from Getty Images

Phil Foden is likely to return to the XI for this fixture against Everton. The 22-year-old is a dynamic attacking midfielder with impressive numbers in the Premier League this season, having scored ten goals and provided five assists in just 28 appearances.

With his creativity, vision, and clinical finishing ability, Foden is a constant threat to the opposition’s defence. His return to the starting XI will undoubtedly boost Manchester City’s chances of securing a victory. Foden’s contributions could prove crucial in unlocking Everton’s defence, and he is a player that the Toffees will need to keep a close eye on throughout the game.

Prediction

Everton 1-3 Manchester City

It promises to be a fascinating encounter when Everton host Manchester City at Goodison Park. The home team managed to end their winless run in emphatic fashion with a 5-1 victory against Brighton and will be hoping to build on that momentum.

However, they face a formidable challenge in the reigning champions Manchester City, who have won their last 10 games in the Premier League. The Etihad outfit will be aiming to extend that winning run and take a significant step towards retaining their title. The Hard Tackle predicts a 3-1 win for the visitors.

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