Predicted Manchester City side to play Watford with changes

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola

Manchester City look set to adjust their starting XI for a mid-week Premier League encounter with Watford. We preview Pep Guardiola's possible line-up.

In the aftermath of their 4-2 humbling at the hands of Leicester City at the weekend, Manchester City welcome Watford to the Etihad Stadium with the intention of rejuvenating their stumbling season.

Pep Guardiola's City are experiencing a winless December in all competitions and have not managed to keep a clean sheet since October's defeat of West Bromwich Albion. 

Manchester City's Claudio Bravo during the match

After a fantastic start to his tenure at the Etihad Stadium, where City won their first ten games of the season, Guardiola has seen his side secure just 12 points from a possible 27 amid claims of defensive woes, tumultuous tactics and under-performing stars.

If Guardiola is inclined to provide John Stones with a little more defensive structure, then perhaps central defender Nicolas Otamendi could see a recall and partner the under-fire England defender.

Whether this be as part of a back three or a return to a back four, remains to be seen. Bacary Sagna could be the man to miss out if City stick with a defensive trio.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola speaks with Nolito

Aside from the suspended Fernandinho, City have a full-set of midfield options to select from - and we are likely to see Ilkay Gundogan, Fernando, Kevin De Bruyne, David Silva and one from the quartet of Leroy Sane, Raheem Sterling, Nolito or Jesus Navas. 

Yaya Toure may well have to settle for starting on the bench, while Kelechi Iheanacho should be afforded another chance to replace the banned Sergio Aguero in attack.

Watford's Troy Deeney

Meanwhile, sixth-placed Watford travel to Manchester on the back of an entertaining 3-2 victory over Everton.

Two-goal hero Stefano Okaka is expected to keep his place in a two-pronged attack, alongside Troy Deeney - who is still on the hunt for his 100th Watford goal - having gone eight games without scoring.

Watford's Stefano Okaka celebrates scoring their third goal

Against City, Watford manager Walter Mazzarri looks likely to retain a back four - with a midfield diamond completed by Etienne Capoue, who is expected to shake off illness to be deployed behind Deeney and Okaka.

Here are the predicted line-ups for Manchester City and Watford in full:

Manchester City:

Watford:

 

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