The Inside Track: Manchester City

By SFC Media Fri 14 Apr Saints vs Man City
Photo by Reuters | Manchester City celebrate

BBC Radio Manchester commentator Mike Minay gives us the lowdown on Southampton's next opponents, Manchester City.

What have you made of Manchester City’s season so far?

I think City’s season has been a relative disappointment, really. I think when Pep Guardiola came in there was an expectation that City would be challenging for the title. That’s not to say they aren’t at the moment, but Pep has even admitted himself that it is gone.

He’s said in a couple of press conferences that he has met the owners already and they are happy but there will be this review at the end of the season. So the number one goal for Manchester City now has to be Champions League qualification.

What about the FA Cup?

There will be the question when Manchester City play Arsenal in the semi-final to see the emphasis that is put on that compared to going for Champions League football and making sure Man City finish there again this season.

If I am right in saying, I don’t think Pep Guardiola has managed at a club and not won a trophy in his first season, so for him winning the FA Cup is a big thing. So a successful season, from now, for would be an FA Cup win and fourth or higher in the Premier League.

What sort of team can we expect Guardiola to put out?

He’s the only manager that hasn’t named an unchanged side this season. Most clubs have a stable goalkeeper but Manchester City haven’t even got have that! So that makes predicting it really hard.

The only thing I can say is that there will be absolutely no question of Agüero starting. The link-up play that Sané, Sterling and Agüero have is absolutely incredible. I would say they make up the most dangerous strike force I have seen in the Premier League for Manchester City.

What have you made of Southampton’s season from the outside?

I have always been a bit confused by Southampton this season, if I am honest. They have the ability to really turn it on; reaching a league cup final is no easy feat. To do that, in the manner that they did, to go to Anfield and grab that late winner through Shane Long, was incredible.

But then again you see them in other games and they are a bit of a disappointment. One thing I will say is that Southampton have always managed to find the right manager. I wouldn’t necessarily say that Claude Puel has stamped his Southampton authority yet, but that may come in time and he will also have the record that he took Southampton to the brink of their first trophy win in some time.

A score prediction for Saturday?

I think it’s one of the hardest ones to call because both teams have been so inconsistent this season. The Manchester City fan in me wants to say 2-1 to City, but the realistic football fan would probably go with a 2-2 draw. Both teams play attacking and nice football which I think can leave them open at times, so an exciting 2-2 draw. But I think if one team can win it, I do think it’s Manchester City.

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