Manchester City vs Hull City
Manchester City will eagerly welcome Hull City to the Etihad with the hope of putting their season back on track. Hopes of a potential quadruple of silverware were crushed this week with City crashing out of the FA Cup after a shock defeat to Wigan before losing to Barcelona 4-1 on aggregate in the Champions League. Pellegrini’s men will now look to capitalise on their 3 games in hand over Premier League leaders Chelsea who are currently 9 points ahead. City fans will hope that the injury suffered by Agüero is not too serious and will not prevent the Argentine from building on his tally of 26 goals this season.
Manchester City have played down the panic over Argentine striker Sergio Agüero injury he sustained against Barcelona but after successive absences due to injuries this season he is unlikely to be risked. City still posses plenty of attacking threat in the form of Yaya Touré. The Ivory Coast international has 13 goals this season, second only to Agüero and has a shot accuracy rating of 51.4%. The EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows that Touré has made 1038 attacking contributions (shots on target, passes, dribbles and crosses) this season; the second highest in the Premier League. Touré is 23/10 to score at anytime with 888sport.com
Pellegrini will be hoping to see the end of the recent slump which has seen City strikers Aguero, Dzeko and Alvaro Negredo go 1,000 minutes without scoring a goal between them in all competitions. The EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows that Negredo has 9 goals so far this season with a shot accuracy rating of 50% while Dzeko has 7 goals to his name with a shot accuracy rating of 37%.
Manchester City’s defence has come under attack in recent weeks following their FA Cup and Champions League exit. Nevertheless, City fans should feel confident in their side’s ability to handle Hull City’s attacking threats. The EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows that Jesús Navas has made 35 tackles this season, winning 88.6% of them. Meanwhile, skipper Vincent Kompany leads the way with defensive contributions (tackles, blocks, clearances and interceptions) with 182 so far this season.
Hull City will feel confident at the prospect of travelling to the Etihad this weekend having reached the semi-finals of the FA Cup for the first time since 1930 in a match that saw them put three goals past Sunderland in 22 minutes. On the back of such an achievement, Steve Bruce’s men will be hoping to take advantage of Manchester City’s shock defeat at the hands of Wigan last weekend and their Champions League exit by creating their very own upset. The Tigers, who only won promotion to the Premier League last year, sit just 5 points clear of the relegation zone with games against West Brom, West Ham and Stoke following their clash with City.
Steve Bruce will be relying on Ahmed Elmohamady to create attacking inspiration for Hull this week. The Egyptian has 2 goals so far this season and the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows that he has made 652 attacking contributions (shots on target, dribbles, passes and crosses) Tigers fans will expect Elmohamady to take full advantage of Manchester City’s defensive problems.
With 5 goals, Yannick Sagbo is Hull’s top scorer so far this season. The Ivory Coast international has a shot accuracy rating of 64.3% this season and is most likely to find the net for the Tigers. He is 4/1 to score at anytime with 888sport.com
Although buoyed by their FA Cup run, Hull will need to remain cautious of the impressive firepower Manchester City can wield in attack. Although Argentine forward Sergio Agüero is likely to miss the fixture after suffering an injury against Barcelona, Hull will still have their hands full with the likes of David Silva and Edin Dzeko. Liam Rosenior and Curtis Davies will prove crucial to Hull’s hopes in defence. The EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows that Rosenior has won 82% of his tackles this season whilst Davies has made 363 defensive contributions (tackles, blocks, interceptions and clearances); the most at the club.