Manchester City v Sunderland

Pep Guardiola

New Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola likes to get involved on the touchline


Manchester City’s £47.5m signing John Stones could make his debut in defence, with Vincent Kompany out and Nicolas Otamendi nursing a tendon problem.

New manager Pep Guardiola will be without Leroy Sane (hamstring), while Kevin De Bruyne is short of fitness.

Sunderland signings Adnan Janujaz, Papy Djilobodji, Donald Love and Paddy McNair could all feature in David Moyes’ first game in charge.

Sebastian Larsson has been ruled out for six months with a knee injury.

Lee Cattermole, Jan Kirchhoff and Billy Jones are also injured.


Steve Wilson: “News that Manchester City’s long courtship of Pep Guardiola was finally to succeed broke last February – the day before Manuel Pellegrini’s side won 1-0 at Sam Allardyce’s Sunderland.

“Such was the effect of that announcement on Pellegrini’s authority – and such was Allardyce’s success on Wearside – that City took one point fewer than the Black Cats over the remaining 14 games of the season. Now both clubs are settling into life under a new manager.

“There’s no point in hiring a Michelin-starred chef and then ordering pie and chips – so expect still more spending on City’s squad before the end of the month.

“New Sunderland boss David Moyes comes with far fewer trophies, but with bags of nous and a point to prove.

“His long-term aim is to break the club’s habit of being perennial strugglers against the drop – I’d be surprised if he doesn’t succeed.”

Twitter: @SteveWilson1967


Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola: “To create something we need time, to create something with ideas to attack we need time. But to play with soul and something inside we don’t need time.

“Tomorrow we don’t know if everyone is going to play good or if we will get the result but I will not accept not playing with soul.”

Sunderland boss David Moyes on wantaway defender Lamine Kone: “He’s a big part of it, he’s a big player here. He was definitely in my team tomorrow, but I have got a decision to make because of what he has come out and said. He will be fined for what he has said as well.”


There are high expectations for Pep Guardiola at Manchester City this season but you have to remember he has never managed in the Premier League before and it is different to La Liga and the Bundesliga.

Prediction: 2-0

Lawro’s full predictions v indie band Blossoms

  • Think you can do better than Lawro? Predict the score for this match and the rest of this round’s Premier League fixtures in our Predictor game.



  • Manchester City are unbeaten in 14 top-flight home matches against Sunderland since a 3-2 defeat in the old Division One in December 1981 (W11, D3).
  • Their last home defeat by the Black Cats came in January 1998 in the second tier.
  • Sunderland have suffered four straight defeats in this fixture, home and away.

Manchester City

  • Manchester City are unbeaten in their last seven season-opening Premier League fixtures, winning each of the last five. They have never begun a Premier League season with a home defeat (W3, D5).
  • Pep Guardiola has won the opening league game of the season as a manager in each of his last six seasons: three with Barcelona, and three at Bayern Munich.
  • City suffered five Premier League home defeats in 2015-16, as many as in the previous four seasons combined. They registered 10 defeats in a season for the first time since 2008-09.
  • Sergio Aguero has scored an unrivalled 17 Premier League goals in 2016, from just 18 appearances. He has scored three goals and set up two more in his last three league games against Sunderland.
  • Jesus Navas and Fernandinho could both make their 100th Premier League appearance.


  • The Black Cats have not won a Premier League opener in six attempts since beating Bolton Wanderers in 2009.
  • They conceded the most shots (573) and the most shots on target (223) in the Premier League last season.
  • David Moyes takes charge of his 462nd Premier League game – a tally bettered by only four managers.
  • He has won five times at the Etihad Stadium in the Premier League – the only visiting manager with more victories is Arsene Wenger (6).
  • Jermain Defoe will be looking to become only the eighth player to score in 16 Premier League seasons.

SAM (Sports Analytics Machine) is a super-computer created by @ProfIanMcHale at the University of Salford that is used to predict the outcome of football matches.

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