These two sides are both competing at different ends of the table, with the former trying to retain the Premier League trophy and the latter scrapping for every point they can get. It might be a good time to play the champions after successive losses, however Leicester possess nowhere near the quality to either Barcelona or Liverpool. City were out-battled in the midfield on both occasions. If Leicester come to the Etihad and work hard in the middle of the park, making tackles and giving City players little time with the ball, there could be something for the visitors in midweek. City will view this match as a great opportunity to return to winning ways and boost the team’s morale before a crucial part in their season with a return leg against Barcelona on the horizon. Leicester must go into this match with belief that they can get something and their performance against Everton last time out should give them that.
City have once again disappointed this season, and it looks highly likely that they will finish the campaign trophyless, which could cost Manuel Pellegrini his job in the summer. They were knocked out in both the domestic trophies against sides that they shouldn’t have lost to, while the task in the Champions League looks incredibly togh for a club which has never reached the last eight of the competition. They have closed the gap on Chelsea in the league recently, but they themselves keep dropping points and it looks like they won’t be able to put together a run of results that could topple Chelsea off the summit of the league. Against Liverpool on Sunday, they were second best in all departments and they must improve significantly if they are to get something to show for their efforts this season.
Leicester on the other hand will have been boosted at the weekend as a lot of the clubs near the bottom dropped points. Leicester themselves didn’t play, but they will be eager to get back to action at the Etihad. They may have the edge on City when it comes to fitness, as the home side have played three matches in a period which Leicester have only played once. The midfield area will be key and sides such as Burnley and Hull have showed that it’s possible to travel to the Etihad and get something from the game this season. Leicester must use these instances as inspiration on Wednesday as there is no reason why they can’t do the same.
In the previous meeting of the two sides, it was a scrappy affair and Leicester did limit the amount of chances for Manchester City. However the champions managed to scrape the game by a 1-0 scoreline. Frank Lampard scored the crucial goal for the visitors in December.
Sergio Aguero has been involved in five goals in City’s last three league matches. He has scored three and assisted one.
Leicester City have conceded two or more goals in six of their last ten matches, showing their vulnerabilities in defence.
Manchester City have an important few weeks ahead and they can’t afford to drop many points, if they are to be serious title challengers. Sergio Aguero has been the side’s key man for a number of years and they will need the Argentine to be on top form if they are to retain their championship. The forward is arguably the best player in the league, with an ability to create something from nothing. He twists defenders inside out with his quick feet and is a clinical finisher when a chance comes his way. He has scored 17 goals in the league this season and has assisted a further 6, which highlights his importance to the side. Aguero either scores or assists a goal every 68 minutes which is extraordinary and having a player like the Argentine will win City a lot of points over the last few months of the season. It is in matches like these that Aguero can win points on his own as his style of play is difficult to deal with for players of lesser quality. Leicester will try to defend with numbers on Wednesday, but Aguero has the ability to drift past four or five defenders on his own and he could be too much to handle for the relegation strugglers.
The Leicester midfielder has provided a touch of class to the side this season and has shown that he still has plenty of quality despite approaching the end of his career. After a decorated career with Inter Milan and Real Madrid, it was a shock to see Cambiasso join newly promoted Leicester in the summer. It was certainly a coup and he has contributed greatly to the side this season with his incredible passing range and dogged defensive work. He doesn’t have the stamina that he had during the peak of his career, but his reading of the game is still as good as it ever was and that could be crucial this week. Leicester have struggled to keep clean sheets this season, which makes Wednesday’s fixture look like mission impossible, but the occasion might bring the best out of their experienced playmaker. Yaya Toure will be a concern for Leicester, and they may use Cambiasso to nullify the Ivorian, which will make for an interesting battle in the middle of the park. Leicester may be rank outsiders, but if Cambiasso plays well, it won’t be as one sided as many are predicting.
Manchester City have no injury concerns going into this fixture. They may rotate their side a little, which may give an opportunity to the likes of Wilfried Bony, Frank Lampard and Bacary Sagna a chance in the first team.
Kasper Schmeichel is closing in on a return, but it looks unlikely that he will return at the Etihad to face his former club. The goalkeeper is Leicester’s only injury concern after a weekend off in the Premier League.
I think Manchester City will get back to winning ways, but I don’t think it will be comfortable for them as Leicester have been improving and were very unlucky not to take three points from their last match against Everton. The quality in the City side will prove too much and I expect them to go on to score a couple of goals after a goalless first half. It’s a match that will be seen by Pellegrini as one to rebuild the confidence and City will be motivated to get three points after losing to Liverpool at the weekend.
Manchester City 2-0 Leicester City