Manchester City-Brighton & Hove Albion Preview
Following a blip on the radar, Manchester City appear to have regained their edge as they push toward the end of this unique Premier League campaign.
The Citizens, who also have the FA Cup and Champions League on their radar, look to build on another rout when they visit Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday night.
By all accounts it's likely Manchester City (22-3-9) will finish second to champions Liverpool this season. However, manager Pep Guardiola appears to have challenged his club to finish as strong as possible within the league, whilst also focusing on earning some silverware on both the FA Cup and Champions League fronts.
City host Arsenal in the FA semifinals on July 18 and face Real Madrid in the Champions League next month.
"We have four incredible weeks ahead of us that will never come back," Guardiola told Manchester City's official website after a 5-0 rout of Newcastle United on Wednesday. "This chance we have to get to the FA Cup final and Madrid in the second leg, to keep going in (the Premier League) ... The time we have in our hands is four weeks, it depends on us. This game is about winning, that's all."
City are 4-0-2 since the Premier League's return, and managed to rebound from a 1-0 loss at Southampton last weekend by rolling over Newcastle at the Etihad. David Silva had a goal with two assists and Raheem Sterling scored his 24th over all competitions, whilst Gabriel Jesus (19th goal over all competitions) and Riyad Mahrez (12 goals over all competitions) also found the back of the net for the Citizens.
Kevin De Bruyne (13 goals, 21 assists over all competitions) had a goal with an assist and Silva posted a pair of assists in a 4-0 victory over Brighton on Aug. 31.
It's been a challenging, but rather successful return to play for the Seagulls. Brighton (8-12-14), 15th in the table, are 2-1-2 since the league returned to action from the coronavirus pandemic lockdown. That's actually an impressive mark for the Seagulls, who have faced Arsenal, Leicester City, Manchester United and Liverpool during that span.
It were the champion Reds, though, who handed Brighton a 3-1 loss on Wednesday. Leandro Trossard managed the only goal for Brighton, who have totaled just four goals over their last seven Premier League contests.
"I think we need to take the positives," Trossard, who has five goals this season, told Brighton's official website. "We've got another really tough game again against a world class team in Manchester City on Saturday. We need to keep going until the end of the season."
The Seagulls have been outscored 15-2 whilst losing all five games against City in the Premier League.
Updated July 9, 2020