It’s matchday!!!! Let’s get caught up on all the headlines as we get ready for Manchester City vs. Crystal Palace at the Etihad.
Saul gives us the latest on City’s form and potential injury news.
City are unbeaten after three matches in the league, sitting in second place with seven points.
Palace have won one, drawn one and lost one and sit in ninth place in the table.
A fun match is ahead as Palace have proved a thorn in City’s side.
Which team will come out in front?
Pep Guardiola’s side have Laporte and Grealish questionable. Phillips and Ake are out.
The Eagles have Butland, McArthur, Tomkins and Ferguson out.
Everything you need to know, Predicted XI – Manchester City vs Crystal Palace Preview - Daniel Gallagher-Parker - City Report
Some questions to be answered about how City will line up, and some that answer themselves.
Despite City having conceded three goals on three occasions this season already, it’s hard to imagine Guardiola changing the back four, given the lack of options, and with Riyad Mahrez playing the full 100 minutes on Wednesday night, it begs the question of who will start at right-wing?
As always with Pep roulette, trying to predict his starting XI is next to impossible, but our thoughts are that the Catalan will only name one change to the first team, with that being John Stones making his second start of the season.
Pep Guardiola has already explained how Man City can end Crystal Palace hoodoo this weekend - Alex Brotherton - Manchester Evening News
Pep, as usual, has done plenty of planning on how to attack Palace.
City cannot change how Vieira sets up his team, but they must find ways to break them down and find their usual rhythm.
“It takes time to change the rhythm because the ‘keeper all the time takes the momentum, long balls. They are good at keeping the ball,” said Guardiola. “They have quality, they defend really well with solidarity and defend the gaps and block the shots. We cannot say that we had many but we had enough chances in the first half to score.”
The reverse fixture four-and-a-half months later was more a case of City failing to capitalise on their dominance; the Blues took 18 shots and enjoyed 74 per cent possession, but just couldn’t score. Knowing Palace’s own attacking prowess, the likes of Erling Haaland and Kevin De Bruyne will need to be clinical in front of goal.
Late breaking injury news out of Selhurst Park gives a boost to the Cityzens.
The loss of Zaha could prove to be a huge blow to Patrick Vieira’s side. The Eagles will need to find scoring from other sources if they hope to get a result against Pep Guardiola’s Man City.
Stay with us here at Bitter and Blue for all the latest in the build up to the match between Manchester City and Crystal Palace.
Pep Guardiola confirms Bernardo Silva will STAY at Manchester City this season - Vayam Lahoti - City Xtra
Pep has spoken. Bernardo Silva will remain at the Etihad... at least for now.
Guardiola benched Silva in Manchester City’s opening games of their title defence against West Ham and Bournemouth.
Silva made his first Premier League start of the campaign in City’s 3-3 draw with Newcastle, scoring and providing an assist on his return to the lineup.
Sources close to the Etihad Stadium have maintained in recent weeks the chances of Bernardo Silva leaving in the closing weeks of the transfer window are extremely slim.
A recent report even suggested Silva had been left ‘unimpressed’ after City turned down a €70 million offer for the Portugal international from PSG.
Speaking ahead of City’s league meeting with Crystal Palace on Saturday, Pep Guardiola has confirmed Bernardo Silva is going to stay at the Etihad Stadium for the current campaign.
Bernardo Silva: Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola insists midfielder will stay at club amid Barcelona interest - Sky Sports
And no, we did not receive an offer from Paris Saint-Germain.
Silva had long been linked with a move to Barcelona. Guardiola admitted the midfielder liked the club a lot in midweek - but reports emerged last night that PSG had made an offer.
The Man City boss has denied that story and is adamant that Silva will be playing his football at the Etihad this season.
“Bernardo Silva will stay at Man City, there are no negotiations,” Guardiola said at his press conference on Friday ahead of City hosting Crystal Palace in the Premier League this weekend.
“He will stay here. We don’t have any phone call from any club regarding Bernardo Silva. That’s why he will stay. I tell you, he will stay.”
The boss was not hearing talk of Palace blanking the Champions last year.
On Crystal/previous results
“We won the Premier League.”
“We know how good they are, they are a tough side, we are looking forward to the challenge. I rate [Patrick] Viera as a human being and the incredible job he is doing...”
“I don’t think the players play thinking of the World Cup. If they get injured, they get injured. They could get injured walking on the street. It is what it is...”
“They have an incredible amount of quality and from nothing can create something.
“We have to be aware and not do mistakes because they defend their box really well, have good set pieces and good transitions.
Guardiola understands the threat that Vieira’s lads pose in front of goal.
“Hopefully, we can break them and win the game.
“They drew at Anfield a few weeks ago. It’s a tough side. We know it.
“It’s a good challenge. We’re looking forward to it.”
City’s last Premier League outing saw us overturn a two-goal deficit to draw 3-3 with a resurgent Newcastle United at St. James’ Park.
Guardiola’s men had taken an early lead through Ilkay Gundogan, but needed an Erling Haaland snapshot and clinical Bernardo Silva finish to claim a point in the north east.
Pep Guardiola suggests Manchester City are now part of Europe’s ELITE clubs - Srinivas Sadhanand - City Xtra
Pep brought the Big Club Energy to Friday’s presser after City were pegged as UCL favorites.
Before their rapid ascent into becoming a European powerhouse, several of the continent’s traditional super-clubs were seen to be in a league of their own.
However, Manchester City’s incredible success has meant they have joined this esteemed group, and will only become a bigger and better brand over time.
Pep Guardiola, whose influence on Manchester City’s reign as the dominant force, has played a key role in them establishing their presence as an elite club and has had his say on how times have truly changed.
“We’ve had a lot of legends; our legend Sergio [Aguero], Vincent Kompany, Pablo Zabaleta, Joe Hart, David Silva.
“Maybe we could not do it, maybe they could’ve chose another club - the charisma at Barcelona, [Real] Madrid, Bayern Munich was higher than Manchester City,” he admitted.
Pep Guardiola continued, “We are new in the highest hierarchy in Europe, we are new, just one decade and they have a long, long history.
And finally, Some much-needed good news along the Sky Blues’ back line.
According to Pol Ballus of the Athletic, Aymeric Laporte is expected back from injury in September. The defender has knee surgery at the end of last season, but is now expected to be close to a recovery.
The club expect the player to be ready for September, but will be heavily eased in. Knee injuries are complex to deal with, and the doctors and physios at the club will be extremely careful with his reintegration to the first-team.
Manchester City are really short at the back at the minute. Nathan Ake’s injury could see him miss a few weeks, and Luke Mbete was stretchered off against Barcelona after a head injury.
There you have it. All the latest City news to get you ready for today’s match. Be sure to follow @BitterandBlue1 throughout the day and during the match for live updates. COME ON CITY!!!!