Manchester City Match Preview

Manchester City were the visitors for West Ham United’s final home game of the 2021/22 season and, coincidently, it is Josep Guardiola’s men who arrive in Stratford to open the 2022/23 Premier League campaign this afternoon.

That match in May saw West Ham go into a 2-0 lead, only for the Citizens to come back and it eventually ended in a 2-2 draw.

Whilst City will be looking to claim the title for a third season in succession, David Moyes will be looking for his side to rekindle the spirit that saw them go unbeaten against Guardiola’s men on two occasions here last season.

The visitors go into the game having lost 3-1 to FA Cup holders Liverpool in last weekend’s FA Community Shield match at The King Power Stadium and they will be hoping to atone for that defeat.

Declan Rice has been confirmed as the club’s new Captain, replacing the retired Mark Noble, so he is expected to start in his familiar midfield role.

The Hammers made Alphonse Areola’s loan move permanent this summer and it remains to be seen whether he will replace Łukasz Fabiański in goal.

Fellow new signings Flynn Downes and Gianluca Scamacca will be looking to make their debuts but the home fans will have to wait a while to see a first glimpse of Moroccan international defender Nayef Aguerd, as he sustained an ankle injury in the 3-1 pre-season defeat against Glasgow Rangers at Ibrox on 19 July which will keep him out of action for a minimum of three months.

Maxwel Cornet made the move from Burnley to East London on Friday but the deal wasn’t completed in time for him to feature here.

It remains to be seen whether Angelo Ogbonna will make a return in defence after missing the majority of last season with cruciate ligament damage.

Nine substitutes can now be named in a matchday squad, meaning that five changes can be made during a match.

The encounter kicks off at 4:30pm and live coverage is being screened by Sky Sports from 4pm. The referee is Michael Oliver.