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Preview: City v West Brom

Heavy is the head that makes squad rotation decisions
Heavy is the head that makes squad rotation decisions
Clive Brunskill

Here's another chance for Manchester City to prove that we aren't the best/crappiest team in the Premier League. So far the only team to have won fewer away matches is Sunderland, who are in dead last place (and of course we already lost away to them). On the other hand, no team has won as many home matches as us, having scored 29 goals at home, which is more goals than any other team has scored total.

Good news - we should have Vincent Kompany back in the lineup today, since he has traveled with the team. He's only featured in 2 of our 6 away matches, and we won one of those. To me, that fact might be the most overlooked part of our poor away form. He is such a rock at the back that everyone else can play more calmly and confidently.

We still won't have David Silva, Matija Nastasic, or Stevan Jovetic, but Nasri has done an amazing job of filling in for Silva, while Demichelis has played very well at the back.

West Brom has been their own kind of up and down team. They've won away at Old Trafford, been absolutely robbed away at Chelsea, and drawn against Arsenal and Everton. On the other hand, they got thrashed by Liverpool, and got soundly beaten by Newcastle and Swansea. They're sitting in 12th, which is about right. Their home and away records are fairly similar, and they haven't scored many goals at either place.

The deciding factor in this game will ultimately be the squad rotation decisions that Manuel Pellegrini makes. After the West Brom game, there are 3 straight tough matches. Away at Southampton, who are unbeaten at home, followed by the last group game away at Bayern, then home to Arsenal. I would expect that Pellegrini will line the squad up so that we have strong teams against Southampton and Arsenal.

I think that we'll see a strong team today, with Aguero and Negredo leading the line. Early subs are likely, letting guys get the win, while still keeping them fresh for the match at Southampton. Hopefully players aren't looking beyond West Brom, even though the squad rotation will be doing exactly that.

Prediction: 3 - 0 for City. Aguero and Negredo each get one, with another coming from a midfielder.