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Liverpool vs Manchester City, 2016 Premier League: Predicted Lineup

Manchester City travel to Liverpool in a crucial clash on New Year's Eve.

Hull City v Manchester City - Premier League Photo by Nigel Roddis/Getty Images

New Year's Eve, Manchester City vs Liverpool. Two Premier League title contenders meet in this epic clash to finish off 2016. Man City will be looking for their fourth straight win in the Premier League while Liverpool haven't lost since the beginning of December in a strange game against AFC Bournemouth. Both teams will want all three points as both need to catch pacesetters Chelsea at the top of the table.

Liverpool may also have a bit of extra motivation against City. Supporters will remember the League Cup final last season where City dispatched Liverpool on penalties to capture the final trophy of Manuel Pellegrini’s City tenure. Both City and Liverpool ended last season with disappointment, but City could at least look to that League Cup victory as a success.

Meanwhile, over at City Pep Guardiola will have his hands full picking a starting XI in this one. Other than the injuries in Gundogan, Kompany and Leroy Sané, it seems everyone is available, including the returning Sergio Agüero after his four-match ban.

Below are the eleven predicted starters for Man City against Liverpool, I believe Pep will use the 4-3-3 he has been using recently, though the winger players will have their work cut out for them.


Goalkeeper: Claudio Bravo

With the January transfer window fast approaching City have been linked to plenty of goalkeepers, as they seem to always be. Until someone is brought in, though, Bravo will remain City’s number one.

Defense: Bacary Sagna, Nicolas Otamendi, Aleksandar Kolarov, Gaël Clichy

John Stones and Pablo Zabaleta are possible starters but with their individual knocks Guardiola might not risk having to use an early sub on a defender again. Sagna, Otamendi, Kolarov, and Clichy give Pep two good fullbacks defensively and centerbacks who can play on their dominant sides with each other.

Midfield: Yaya Touré, Fernandinho, David Silva

Touré was the toughest inclusion for me and his spot might still be difficult for Pep to include. There’s no doubt he is very good running the midfield, but will his lack of pace and effort may hurt City on Liverpool’s counter attacks. Fernandinho must play alongside the Ivorian to help mitigate this. David Silva is another one who simply cannot miss out and he’s been spectacular recently.

Forwards: Raheem Sterling, Sergio Agüero, Kevin De Bruyne

This is the big question for City supporters, does Agüero slot right back into the starting lineup? If City are going to go with their best guns, then Kun is their prized revolver and he must be included. On the wings, Sterling plays better on the right and has been good there over the last couple games. De Bruyne is literally undroppable and can slot in on the left wing. There the Belgian can interchange with David Silva if need be, but De Bruyne is much better defensively so we’ll see him more outside than Silva.

Formation