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OPPOSITION IN FOCUS: MANCHESTER CITY

19 June 2018

Paul Hazlewood
Albion in action against Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium last season.

Our rundown of Brighton & Hove Albion’s Premier League opposition for the 2018/19 campaign continues with Manchester City.

League position 2017/18: 1st

Top league goalscorer: Sergio Aguero (21)


How did they do last season?

Pep Guardiola’s team set numerous records during the 2017/18 Premier League season, as they stormed towards the league title and won the Carabao Cup at Wembley Stadium.

City were crowned champions after Manchester United’s defeat to West Bromwich Albion, and the Citizens went on to set a record points total, as Gabriel Jesus’s 94th-minute winner at Southampton moved them onto 100 points.

A stunning 18 consecutive victories were recorded in the first half of the season, before their first defeat of the campaign came against Liverpool at Anfield.

City’s only defeat at the Etihad Stadium came when their bitter rivals visited towards the end of the season, as Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United came back from 2-0 down to win 3-2.

Other Premier League records set from last season included - most wins (32), best goal difference (+79), most goals scored (106), most away wins (16) and fewest minutes spent in a losing position (153).

Guardiola’s side also beat Arsenal 3-0 in the Carabao Cup Final, but were knocked out of the Emirates FA Cup and UEFA Champions League by Wigan Athletic and Liverpool respectively.



Who’s in charge?

Pep Guardiola arrived at the Etihad Stadium for the start of the 2016/17 season, and the Spaniard won his first game in charge, as City secured a 2-1 victory over Sunderland.

The Manchester club finished the season without any silverware in Guardiola’s opening campaign, but a summer of transfer activity set the Citizens up for a strong reaction in 2017/18.

After playing over 250 games for Barcelona as a player, Guardiola transferred into management in 2007 for the club’s B side, before taking over the first team in 2008.

The 47-year-old won 14 trophies during his time as manager at the Camp Nou, but a move to German giants Bayern Munich came about in 2013.

Guardiola won three Bundesliga titles during his time in Munich, but no success was to be had in the Champions League, and the door opened for him to arrive in England after three seasons.



Who should I keep an eye out for?

Despite being left out of Germany’s World Cup squad for this summer’s tournament, Leroy Sane had an impressive season for the Premier League champions - scoring 14 goals across all competitions.

The winger also contributed 19 assists for his team-mates, as his blistering pace down the flank caused problems for a number of opponents throughout the season.

Sane showed his quality in City’s 3-1 victory over Albion at the Etihad Stadium, as he set up all three goals that left Chris Hughton’s team heading home empty-handed.

How did we fare against them last season?

Albion played their first-ever Premier League game against Manchester City at the Amex Stadium on the opening day of the season, and the Seagulls held Guardiola’s men for 70 minutes.

But a Sergio Aguero strike and an own goal from Lewis Dunk denied Albion on the south coast, as they began life in the top flight of English football.

The reverse fixture was Albion’s penultimate game of the campaign - Leonardo Ulloa equalised for Albion after Danilo’s opener, but goals from Bernardo Silva and Fernandinho made it 3-1 at the Etihad Stadium.


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