Last Saturday evening, following our defeat at the King Power Stadium, it quickly dawned on City fans that this weekend’s fixture has the potential to decide their club’s fate come the end of the season.
The state of the Premier League table shows why. A worrying gap has opened up between City and the holy grail of 17th place, which is currently being occupied by Crystal Palace. The Tigers are currently four points behind Palace, and six behind Leicester and Saturday’s opponents Swansea.
So, Marco Silva and his players are in a spot of bother. This is exacerbated by the fact that all of City’s relegation rivals (excluding Swansea) will have a game in hand after this weekend’s set of matches. It will therefore prove difficult to frame anything other than a win on Saturday as a disaster.
Although no official team news has been released yet, it seems likely that neither Curtis Davies nor Michael Dawson will be ready to return from injury, meaning that Maguire and Ranocchia will continue at centre-back. Dieumerci Mbokani will also be unavailable, so we can expect Oumar Niasse to lead City’s attack once again.
Many eyebrows were raised when Swansea sacked Bob Bradley after just 11 games at the club, but the appointment of Paul Clement appears to have been a prudent one as the former Derby manager has reversed the Swans’ fortunes over the past couple of months. Last weekend’s dramatic win over Burnley certainly did City no favours, and means that a point for them at the KCOM would keep them comfortably above the relegation zone.
If you think historical results between teams are in any way a good guide to contemporary meetings, you might be feeling optimistic – City have defeated Swansea in five of their six games at the KCOM. The bookies make City favourites at 6/4, while an away win is available at 11/5.
Harry Drew (@hdrew95)