Second-place Manchester City is at home to seventh-place Everton in an English Premier League matchup on Sept. 24th. City lost their perfect record last weekend when they blew a 2-0 lead against Fulham in London and had to settle for a 2-2 draw. They have 13 points on four wins and a draw while Everton has seven points from two wins, a draw and a loss.
City beat Birmingham 2-0 at home in the Carling Cup on Wednesday with new-signing Owen Hargreaves scoring just 17 minutes into his City debut. This came as a surprise to many considering the former Manchester United midfielder had only played 11 minutes of football in the past three seasons due to a variety of injuries.
Manager Roberto Mancini is still whining about not having enough players in the squad despite spending millions of dollars of the past two seasons on signings while assembling the highest-paid squad in the world. It’ll be interesting to see who he starts for the game considering City has a Champions League game next Tuesday against Bayern Munich and pampered soccer players can’t handle two games in the same week.
City is 2-0 at home at Etihad Stadium in league play so far this year with seven goals for and none against. They’ve won 11 out of their past 12 matches at home overall, with a 1-1 draw against Napoli in the Champions league spoiling their record. They’ve let in just two goals in those games and have four straight clean sheets at home.
Mancini rested Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko, Vincent Kompany, Yaya Toure, David Silva, and Samir Nasri against Birmingham, and they could all be back against Everton, or any combination of them. However, Nigel de Jong will likely miss the game.
Everton beat West Brom 2-1 in the Carling Cup after extra time on Wednesday and have started the season reasonably well. They lost the likes of Mikel Arteta to Arsenal over the summer as well as Yakubu to Blackburn, and manager David Moyes doesn’t seem to have the sense to play striker Louis Saha when he’s healthy. This leaves Australian Tim Cahill as the team’s best player.
Everton has won their only away game so far this season, 1-0 at Blackburn. They’re unbeaten in their past five games overall with three wins and a pair of draws. They’ll have to play this game without Victor Anichebe.
To complicate matters, Everton has beaten Man City seven times in their last eight meetings, including three in a row and four straight in Manchester. But with the Merseysiders lacking in the goal scoring department and a too-cautious manager in Moyes, that streak should come to an end here with City winning by a couple of goals.
Sportsbook William Hill has the odds of a Man City win at 2/5 and an Everton win at 13/2. A draw is listed at 7/2.