A tricky test awaits Manchester City against Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium

After Liverpool’s midweek 4-1 victory over Luton Town Manchester City faces another crucial Premier League fixture this weekend. Up next for Pep Guardiola’s side is a trip to the Vitality Stadium to take on Bournemouth.

At this stage of this season with the title race heating up every Premier League game for City takes on extra significance. It’s the same equation this weekend with another big fixture looming for the world champions. With Liverpool having already played there is an opportunity for City to put pressure on Arsenal who sit third on the table a point behind Manchester City. Mikel Arteta’s side plays Newcastle after City’s game so a win for the champions will put the pressure back onto Arsenal as the two teams chase Liverpool.

Bournemouth have a threat up front to trouble Manchester City

But the game at the Vitality Stadium will be no pushover. Bournemouth does possess quality in their ranks and will be fired up to end a result after failing to win in their last 6 Premier League games. The danger man for Manchester City will be Bournemouth striker Dominic Solanke. The striker has scored 14 goals in the league this season and did net against City in their 6-1 win at the Etihad earlier this season. He isn’t the only weapon at Andoni Iraola’s disposal. The Cherries do have more quality up front with Justin Kluivert and former City player Enes Unal in their lineup. The Manchester City defence will need to be on guard to contend with the danger posed by the Cherries.

Speaking before his team takes on Bournemouth Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola is well aware of the threat on Andoni Iraola’s side. He praised how organised the Cherries have become under Iraola. Guardiola said: “It is always a difficult game because of the way they play. It will be completely different to when we played at the Etihad. When we played Bournemouth (on that occasion), in the second half they changed completely, the players understood what he wanted and played really well. They are completely alive, aggressive, and well-organised. They are a good team.”

Another big game lies ahead

Yet another crucial fixture awaits Manchester City. Given what’s at stake and how well Liverpool is playing anything less than three points will disappointing for Pep Guardiola’s side. While Bournemouth pose a tricky challenge if City are at their best they should have enough quality to see off the hosts.

One story to watch for when the teams are announced is if Kevin De Bruyne will start the game. Guardiola also told the media pre-game that the midfielder will travel with the City squad for today’s game. The champions should have enough quality to deal with Bournemouth with or without De Bruyne but his availability is something to watch for pre-game.

Hear the thoughts of Esteemed Kompany host Steven Mcinerney in his match preview of today’s game in the video below.

Tags Andoni Iraola Arsenal Bournemouth Dominic Solanke Enes Unal English Premier League Justin Kluivert Kevin De Bruyne Liverpool Manchester City Pep Guardiola Premier League title race Vitality Stadium