Pep Guardiola and his City team take the short journey across the Pennines on Saturday to the John Smith Stadium to face the form team in the race for the Premier League, Huddersfield Town.
Any City fan dreaming of a repeat of the 10-1 drubbing City inflicted upon The Terriers in November 1987 when three City players notched hat tricks may need to think again. Huddersfield Town currently lead the form table in the Championship and have lost only one game (in all competitions) since the end of November. Their record in the last two and a half months reads P15 W12 D2 L1 and this will ensure that they will step out onto the pitch on Saturday afternoon brimming with confidence and ready to turn over the ‘fancy dans’ from the Premier League.
Pep needs to be under no illusions as to the task ahead of his team at the weekend and know that he cannot afford to treat the opposition with anything other than respect. This is a club which won the FA Cup in 1922 and which boasts the record of becoming the first English team to win three successive titles – a feat which has only ever been matched by three other clubs and which has never been bettered. They have history and will be looking to add to it on Saturday afternoon at our expense.
Huddersfield Town v Man City Live Streams & Global TV Coverage
Talking of history…City’s record against the Yorkshire club is nothing to write home about, in fact they actually hold the edge in terms of games won.
Manchester City record v Huddersfield Town – P68 W21 D25 L22 GF95 GA81.
Indeed the last two time the clubs played during the 1999/2000 season City lost 0-1 at Maine Road and were held to a 1-1 draw in the away fixture played almost to the day (18th Feb) 17 years ago. Whilst much has changed in those intervening years, we are hardly their bogey team and they will relish the chance to take on City on home turf.
Huddersfield Town may not lead the Championship but they are have outperformed the top two (Newcastle and Brighton) in recent weeks and show all the signs of the club with momentum. This has in no small part been down to the influence that City loanee Aaron Mooy has had in their midfield. Having made 30 appearances for the Yorkshire club since his arrival almost directly from City’s sister club Melbourne City, he has notched 2 goals and has consistently been identified as one of their top performers. Sadly for the Terriers the Aussie will be absent at the weekend as he is not eligible to play against his parent club which is probably just as well as City fans can well recall the last time a City player on loan turned out against us…
Huddersfield Town: Who Are Ya?
As well as missing one of his key midfielders on Saturday, Huddersfield’s manager, David Wagner, will of course have to face that now common dilemma of whether to ‘disrespect the cup’ and make several changes in order to rest his first team players for the Championship push or opt to try and maintain the momentum by retaining his first pick players. His side are due to face title rivals Reading FC on Tuesday evening and enticing as the quarter finals of the FA Cup might berth current state of football pretty much dictates that the glory of the cup pales in comparison to the opportunity to reach the ‘Land of Milk and Honey’ (courtesy of Sky TV money) that is the Premier League. Reading sit one point behind them in the league and have no FA Cup drama to distract their preparation so this may very well sway his decisions. Wagner is no novice to football – after a career playing in the German leagues for clubs including Eintracht Frankfurt and Schalke 04 and earning 8 international caps for the United States, he subsequently managed Borussia Dortmund before taking over at the Yorkshire club and so he has plenty of experience to rely upon.
? Manchester City (@ManCity) February 15, 2017
He will not be alone in this dilemma with his opposite number having to decide who should turn out given that City face a last 16 Champions League fixture against Ligue One form team Monaco also on Tuesday evening. Shorn of the talents of Gabriel Jesus quite possibly for the remainder of the season he may opt to give Sergio Aguero some more game time to sharpen him up but we can perhaps expect outings on Saturday for members of the squad who have not featured much of late including Vincent Kompany, Clichy, Zabaleta, Fernando and Delph as well as Navas and even the forgotten man, young Kelachi Iheanacho. Should he do so I wouldn’t be surprised to hear the full and hypocritical approbation of the media for any such decisions irrespective of the proximity of the Champions League fixture? City have found some form of late and although the fluid attacking force which has emerged during the last few weeks will be disrupted by the loss of Jesus, they should have enough quality to be able to reach the quarter finals.
The match has not been selected for television so Blues not attending the game will have to seek other viewing options – I strongly suspect I will have been dragged along to Ikea on Saturday afternoon. Oh joy!
Are you Up for the Cup?
Last 8 fixtures (all comps)
Huddersfield Town WLWWWWWW
Manchester City WWLDWWWW
Goals per game – HTFC 1.4 MCFC 2.1
Ave Possession – HTFC 55.9% MCFC 60.6%
Pass accuracy – HTFC 78% MCFC 84.8%
Shots per game – HTFC 14 MCFC 16.1
? Huddersfield Town (@htafcdotcom) February 15, 2017
Come on City!!!