Manchester City will clash heads with Swindon Town at the County Ground on Friday night, hoping to pick up a win in the third round of the FA Cup competition. The Citizens will be heading into the contest on the back of a thrilling 2-1 victory over Arsenal in the Premier League, whereas the hosts recorded a 5-2 win against Northampton Town on January 1.
Several Manchester City’s first-team players and backroom staff, including Pep Guardiola, tested positive for Covid 19. There are significant doubts over John Stones’ fitness levels, whereas Oleksandr Zinchenko and Phil Foden are already out with coronavirus. Furthermore, Riyad Mahrez is away on the Africa Cup of Nations duty.
“It’s not for me to say. We have seven players, I have to prepare a game tomorrow. We have to go again, we don’t know if tomorrow more players will be unavailable. I don’t want to say now incase I forget one. It’s seven players and 14 staff unavailable so it’s not for me to say.” – assistant coach Rodolfo Borrell revealed in the press conference.
The Citizens will probably opt for the 4-3-3 formation with several tweaks from the last game. Kayky might get the nod over Riyad Mahrez in attack, whereas Zack Steffen looks likely to make his way back into the starting eleven.
4-3-3 Manchester City Predicted Lineup Vs Swindon Town
Zack Steffen will operate in between the sticks for the upcoming clash. The American shot-stopper will hope to put up a strong performance and secure a clean sheet on Friday.
Luke Mbete and CJ Egan-Riley might replace Aymeric Laporte and Ruben Dias, respectively, to form the centre-half partnership at the heart of City’s backline.
Nathan Ake should be a starter at the left-back position, whereas Kyle Walker will fill in on the other flank as the right-back. The full-backs will be expected to stay compact and keep their shape defensively.
Fernandinho might start in the holding midfield position and could be assigned with more of a defensive role to shield the away side’s back-four.
Ilkay Gundogan could start over Bernardo Silva in the central midfield role. On the other hand, 19-year-old James McAtee could be asked to slot into the attacking midfield role. The duo would be determined to set up some clear-cut goal scoring chances for the front men.
Romeo Lavia will have to settle for a place on the bench, but he could come on to make a cameo appearance in the second half.
Jack Grealish and Kayky will take up the wide positions, playing on the left and right-wing, respectively.
Cole Palmer is expected to lead the line for Manchester City on Friday night. The Englishman will be hoping to get his name on the scoresheet when he faces off against the Swindon defence that has conceded four goals in their last three league matches.