WILL DYER (@w2Dyer) gets back in to the Super Sunday groove. Manchester City are playing some beautiful football but Swansea can match them on their day, will the latter continue their good form and give Pep’s men a workout?
Manchester City v Swansea City | Sunday 13:30 | Sky Sports 1
The midweek round of fixtures couldn’t have played out better for Manchester City. The Citizens were the only side inside the top nine to win their match.
It means that Pep Guardiola’s men have closed the gap to Chelsea to 10 points and are now tightly bunched up in a chasing pack with Spurs, Arsenal and Liverpool all separated by just one point.
It was a great couple of weeks for Swansea too. New boss Paul Clement appears to have had the immediate impact that his predecessor Bob Bradley did not. Swansea recorded wins over Liverpool and Southampton to pull themselves clear of the relegation zone for the first time since early October.
Swans On Song
The bulk of the Swans squad has always had the ability there all season but you get the feeling that the loss of the captain, Ashley Williams, and long-standing club servant and manager, Garry Monk, has been pivotal.
At the centre of defence Alfie Mawson appears to be rising to the challenge and adapting to life in the Premier League. Swansea’s fluid style is still there, Gylfi Sigurdsson remains at the club and the 4-3-3 formation looks likely to bear fruit with a few tweaks. All in all the second half of the season promises to be much rosier than 2016.
Pep’s team are looking up. Against Tottenham they played some brilliant football. Game management remains an issue and the defence needs to show more consistency but there have been signs of improvement.
At the London Stadium on Wednesday night they limited West Ham to just the solitary shot on target. Going forward they made mincemeat of the Hammers as usual and Gabriel Jesus showed his immense potential on his full Premier League debut.
At time of writing, this weekend could be another step back towards the title race. Swansea City present an interesting challenge. The Sky Blues have beaten them in seven of the last eight meetings but Swansea have scored in all of the last seven.
End to End Stuff
The South Wales club have scored in six of their last nine away games and with City managing just the one clean sheet in their last 10 games at Etihad Stadium, both teams to score looks like a banker and one at a good price too, Even money with Betfair.
Swansea will see this as a nothing to lose game but one which could be used as yet another confidence booster to pull them further up the table. Clement has some knowledge of Guardiola’s coaching style after working with his Bayern Munich players last summer.
These clubs have similar styles. Flowing, passing football and if we see a regular turnover of possession it could lead to an end-to-end game which should produce some goals. As mentioned, all of the last seven meetings have been Both Teams To Score games.
Manchester City v Swansea City – Both Teams To Score (1/1 Betfair)