Manchester City will be desperate for a comfortable and uneventful victory at home to Wolves when they take on the West Midlands side on Sunday afternoon.
There has been far too much chaos and inconsistency for Pep Guardiola’s liking in recent weeks and it seemed to come to a head with his post-match comments after the Tottenham match.
City know that any more slip-ups could hand the title to Arsenal and they will also be in the knowledge that Arsenal are up against Manchester United, meaning dropped points there are very possible.
This is the side that Guardiola might deploy to ensure he gets the three points on Sunday.
GK: Ederson – He may have been at fault for the first Tottenham goal with a loose pass out to Rodri, but Guardiola is not about to suddenly drop the Brazilian.
RB: Rico Lewis – A real success story of the season for Manchester City, Rico Lewis has become an important part of the squad and is likely to be tasked with aiding the attack down the right against Wolves.
CB: John Stones – He has had a couple of injuries recently but John Stones appears to be the senior defender at City right now as Ruben Dias struggles for fitness.
CB: Manuel Akanji – He looks to have been a smart signing from Borussia Dortmund as he is comfortable playing alongside multiple different partners at the back.
LB: Joao Cancelo – Struggling for form of late, Cancelo returning to his best could be the difference between whether City can keep tabs with Arsenal or not as the season wears on.
CM: Rodri – The Spaniard looked sloppy in the opening half against Tottenham but generally, he is as consistent as ever. His movement of the ball from midfield is a key part of City’s game plan and Wolves must address it.
CM: Ilkay Gundogan – Much like Rodri, Gundogan gets on with his job in midfield relatively calmly, but he also adds a very valuable threat in attack for Guardiola’s side.
RW: Phil Foden – Another one of City’s stars that has not been at his best in recent weeks, but Foden is the sort of player that could strike at any moment.
CAM: Kevin De Bruyne – He sat out of the game against Tottenham which means he is fresh to run the show at the Etihad against Wolves. It only takes a second for De Bruyne to influence a game and Wolves will know that.
LW: Riyad Mahrez – The Algerian is a very streaky player and if the Spurs game is anything to go by, he is starting a hot streak. He netted twice against Antonio Conte’s side to ensure the points stayed in Manchester.
ST: Erling Haaland – It will have been killing him that he hasn’t started 2023 very well. He scored against Spurs though and Wolves may be on the receiving end of the Norwegian making up for the lost time.