Manchester City will travel to Lancashire to clash heads with Burnley at Turf Moor on Sunday looking to leapfrog Liverpool back to the top of the Premier League standings. The Citizens are in dire need of winning this game as any points dropped would hand the advantage back to the Reds in the title race. With just three league matches left to play for Man City this season, Pep Guardiola must decide on which players he wants to trust with a first-team place during the business end of this campaign.
The Mancunian outfit cannot afford to lose any momentum, but the Clarets could prove to be a stern test for them this weekend. In this same fixture last season, the Premier League champions were held to a frustrating 1-1 draw which should give Liverpool fans some hope of an unlikely upset on Sunday.
Here are three changes Guardiola needs to implement so that his side has a strong chance of claiming maximum points versus the Clarets.
Opt For A Sane-Aguero-Sterling Frontline
Guardiola has chopped and changed his attack quite a few times in recent weeks. However, it is clear that his strongest and most reliable front three would include both Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling providing the width on the flanks while Sergio Aguero spearheads City’s attack up top.
The visitors should start the match with their best and most in-form players on the pitch so that they have the possible opportunity to get the all-important three points this weekend.
Play John Stones Alongside Aymeric Laporte In Defence
Guardiola has made a habit of rotating his backline during this campaign. He has often used Nicolas Otamendi and Vincent Kompany sporadically to take John Stones’ place in defence so that the English defensive ace has enough time to recover and get some rest.
However, the Citizens cannot afford the luxury of resting their best players when they are so close to winning the Premier League title. Hence, playing their most dynamic defensive duo will help them control the game better and eradicate the Burnley chances especially during counter attacks.
Solve The Left-back Conundrum
Man City have enjoyed another stellar campaign, but one thing that keeps worrying the club’s fans has been the uncertainty of who is going to play at left-back. Oleksander Zinchenko has often been used in that position with good effect in recent weeks.
Benjamin Mendy is also back from his injury so he will be ready to start this game away at Lancashire. Even Fabian Delph could be an option for the left-back position. However, Guardiola would be better of using Zinchenko again this weekend as the Ukrainian is currently in a rich vein of form in the English top-flight and knows what it takes to be consistent while operating as a full-back.