Next Saturday, March 15, 2014 (5:45 PM Pacific. 12:45 GMT), Hull City and Manchester City will go head-to-head at the KC Stadium for round 30 of the English Premier League, in a very important match for the Citizens, that is if they want to preserve their title aspirations intact after being dropped to 4th on the table due to their absence from League action.
The home side, Hull City, is highly motivated after their convincing Cup win against Sunderland, which offered them a ticket to the FA Cup semi-final, where they will measure forces with League One side, Sheffield United.
Hull City’s boss, Steve Bruce, has been performing a very interesting job so far this season, allowing the Tigers to enjoy some stability at this stage of the season, since they are five points above the relegation line. For next Saturday’s match, Steve Bruce will not be able to count on Jake Livermore, who is sidelined due to a thigh injury, and on Robbie Brady, Joe Dudgeon and Paul McShane, all of them still recovering from their long-term respective injuries.
As for Manchester City, they seem to be on a less positive moment of the season. The team’s recent defeats against Wigan and Barcelona have certainly caused some damage on the team’s morale and now it is up to Manuel Pellegrini to restore his boys’ confidence levels and stamina to face what’s to come until the end of the season.
The Sky Blues have only scored once on all of the team’s last three Premier League matches and since the home defeat against Chelsea, they seem to have lost some of that enthusiasm that pushed through the twenty-match unbeaten run on all competitions.
For next Saturday’s match, the Chilean boss will probably not be able to count on Sergio Aguero, who does not seem to be 100% fit after coming back from injury.
With two games in hand, Manchester City will need to rally the troops quickly in order to get back to a positive streak of results and to apply some pressure on the League leaders, Chelsea. Next Saturday’s match will certainly be a good test for Pellegrini’s boys to see if they have what’s necessary to come back from a negative cycle and to impose a defeat on a very well organized Hull City side that has already proven this term to be twice as competent when playing at home. This being said, the most likely outcome is 2-1 to Manchester City.
The match will be televised on NBC Sports Network (USA), and BT Sport 1 (UK).
Hull City (4-4-1-1)
McGregor; Rosenior, Davies, Chester, Figueroa; Elmohamady, Huddlestone, Meyler, Quinn; Long, Jelavic
Manchester City (4-4-2)
Hart; Zabaleta, Kompany, Demichelis, Kolarov; Toure, Fernandinho, Silva, Nasri; Negredo, Dzeko