Preview: Crystal Palace v Manchester City

An out-of-form Crystal Palace outfit play host to a Manchester City side eager to find their rhythm after the international break.

Premier League
19 November 2016
Kick-off: 23:00 HKT
Venue: Selhurst Park

Referee: B. Madley
Assistants: M. McDonough, M. Perry
Fourth official: A. Davies

Head-to-head summary:

Crystal Palace 12 2 3 7
Manchester City 12 7 3 2

Previous encounter:

Manchester City 4-0 Crystal Palace (16/01/16) Premier League

Manchester City goalscorers: F. Delph (22′), S. Aguero (41′, 68′), D. Silva (84′)

#mcfc Instagram of the Day 858: Bac in action #mancity #manchestercity

A photo posted by Manchester City (@mancity) on

Players to watch:

Palace will be looking to the likes of Christian Benteke to make the most of his goal-scoring chances, while Yohan Cabaye may play a crucial role in the middle of the park.

With eight goals already this season, Sergio Aguero remains City’s most lethal weapon, especially with Kevin de Bruyne providing the creative edge from midfield.

Team form and manager quotes:

The Eagles are on a poor run of form heading into the tie. They have lost their last four consecutive games and have only managed one win in their last six games.

Meanwhile, City are unbeaten in their last three games in all competitions. They thrashed West Brom 4-0 before an impressive 3-1 win over Barcelona. However, their most recent game saw them held to a 1-1 draw by Middlesbrough.

Despite their recent slump seeing them fall to within a point of the drop zone, Palace manager Alan Pardew insists his team is not in a relegation battle.

“I’m not even thinking we’re in a relegation battle at all, if I’m honest,” Pardew said. “We have to get some results in the next few weeks.

“Back-to-back wins will take you into mid-table. A long way to go yet. It’s about getting the balance in the style of play.

“I look at the group and there are fantastic players in our team. We’re in a false position when I look at the league table, but we have to put that right.”

Despite Palace’s position in the standings, City manager Pep Guardiola was full of praise for Pardew’s men, saying: “When I see a team I never look at the position of the table. I see the games, I don’t go to see which position they are I try to analyse what they do and especially when they play good, they are strong, it is not easy.

“They cross a lot. Benteke in the box is unstoppable. Every game is different. Maybe tomorrow they make the best performance ever or maybe not so this kind of thing does not depend upon which position they are in now.”

Team news:

Palace goalkeeper Steve Mandanda is unavailable due to a knee injury, while Joe Ledley is a doubt after picking up a knock. However, Lee Chung-yong should be available after suffering a blow while on international duty.

City are without the services of goalkeeper Claudio Bravo and Fabian Delph due to injuries. However, Bacary Sagna returned to training this week and is ready to take part in the tie.