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Middlesbrough vs. Manchester City, Premier League 2017: Team News, Preview, Predictions

Can City win again and stay strong in the Top-4 race?

Manchester City v Manchester United - Premier League Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

The draw against Manchester United wasn't he best result, but it wasn't something to be sad about either. Manchester City remain strong in the race for a top-four finish in the Premier League and will end the season ahead of Liverpool if the Sky Blues win their remaining league matches, which are all winnable.

Pep Guardiola welcomed Gabriel Jesus back to action on Thursday's Derby, and the Brazilian could have won the game had he not been just a little big offside. It's clear that Jesus has a knack for being at the right place at right time, and he hasn't missed a bit despite being three months away from the game because of injury.

The return of Gabriel Jesus gives Guardiola a selection headache. The attacking options are vast again, and Sergio Agüero must be concerned about his spot up front again. It's a nice problem to have, and both Agüero and Jesus wil be eager to impress the boss and help City get an important victory away from home.

Middlesbrough will host the Citizens at the Riverside Stadium on Sunday, and with relegation looking more and more likely, this looks like the last roll of the dice for Boro. A loss will most definitely get them quite close to the Championship next season, and the home crowd will be hoping for a famous win against City to give them a remote chance of staying in the top flight.

This promises to be a nervous match with big implications in both parts of the table. Only one team can get the win they so badly need, and City start as favorites. But football is crazy, and we never know. City have a job to do. Can they do it?


MATCH INFO, TV/STREAMING

Date/Time: Sunday, April 30, 2017, 2:05pm BST (UK), 9:05am ET, 6:05am PT (USA), 6:35pm IST (India)

Venue: Riverside Stadium, Middlesbrough, England

Referee: Kevin Friend

Television: Not Televised (UK), Premier League Extra Time (USA), Super Sport 5 (Africa), Star Sports 4 (India), TSN1 (Canada), elsewhere

Online streaming: NBC Sports Live (USA), elsewhere


TEAM NEWS

Claudio Bravo is out for the season with a calf injury, so Willy Caballero will be the City keeper for the final five games of the campaign. Bacary Sagna is back from injury and will probably start this one after watching the Manchester Derby from the bench. John Stones and David Silva will undergo late fitness tests, and only the Spaniard is likely to be available for the bench. Vincent Kompany and Yaya Touré may be given a rest given the quick turnaround from the United game.

The big doubt is up front, now that Gabriel Jesus is back. There are now four world-class options and three spots in the attack, so one of Jesus, Sergio Agüero, Leroy Sané or Raheem Sterling will be on the bench. It could be the Brazilian given he's just returned from injury, but Pep clearly loves him and he may start.


POSSIBLE LINEUPS

Middlesbrough (4-3-3)

Guzan; Chambers, Bernardo, Gibson, Friend; De Roon, Clayton, Forshaw; Stuani, Negredo, Ramírez

Man City (4-2-3-1)

Caballero; Sagna, Otamendi, Kolarov, Clichy; Fernandinho, Delph; Sterling, De Bruyne, Sané; Agüero


PREDICTION

Back to the winning ways: 3-0 City.