No rest for the gifted – Peterborough United vs Manchester City Preview
Pep Guardiola's Manchester City will face off against Grant McCann's Peterborough United in the 5th round of the FA Cup. The match will take place at the Weston Homes Stadium on Tuesday the 1st of March and will kick off at 19:45 (GMT) - The fixture will be broadcast live to the UK on ITV.
In his press conference - Guardiola said he will 'decide tomorrow' which goalkeeper will get the nod in the 5th round tie with Peterborough United, as Zack Steffen is ruled out due to an issue with his shoulder. Guardiola also confirmed that Oleksander Zinchenko will play against Peterborough, the Catalan said he wants the Ukrainian to 'show the reason why he's here', despite the current horrors in his home nation.
Ederson, Walker, Stones, Ake, Zinchenko, Fernandinho, Gundogan, Bernardo, Jesus, Foden, Grealish
League position: 1st
Top scorer: Mahrez (18)
Previous result: W 0-1 v Everton (A)
City were fortunate to come away from Goodison Park with 3 points on the weekend, with Everton restricting the Blues to very few clear chances. In the end, it was an error from Michael Keane that opened the door for Phil Foden to snatch the lead against the Toffees in the 82nd minute. The drama didn't end there, however, as just a couple of minutes later, the ball bounced up in the City box and appeared to strike Rodri on the arm. Chris Kavanagh on VAR did check the incident; however, it was controversially deemed that the ball had hit Rodri above the sleeve line. It was a crucial 3 points for City, and a blow to title rivals Liverpool who are now, once again, 6 points behind the league leaders with a game in hand.
The goal against the Toffees was a 10th for Foden in all competitions this season, the England international has also provided 6 assists. A good run of form for Foden could potentially lead to him surpassing last season's tally of 16 goals in all competitions. So far, the young star has managed to beat his goal tally from the previous campaign every year, showing a clear progression in his goal contributions year on year. He is becoming paramount to this City squad, bringing an abundance of class and energy to the City front line. Despite a recent dip in form, the goal against Everton could be the catalyst for Foden to shine in this sublime City squad once again.
City have enjoyed this season’s FA Cup so far, beating Swindon Town 4-1 away in the 3rd round, and then beating Fulham 4-1 at home in the 4th. The 4th round tie saw Riyad Mahrez score 2, with Ilkay Gundogan and John Stones also getting on the scoresheet. In the 20/21 FA Cup, City managed to reach the semi-final, however, lost out to Chelsea at Wembley. Guardiola is looking to do one better this season and capture his second ever FA Cup trophy. His first time winning the competition was in 2019, beating Watford 6-0 at Wembley in the final.
League position: 24th
Top scorer: Clarke-Harris, Dembele (5)
Previous result: L 0-3 v Hull City (H)
It has been a tricky season so far for the Posh, who currently sit bottom of the EFL Championship with just 5 wins from 33 league matches. Peterborough had to say goodbye to their manager, Darren Ferguson recently, with the Scotsman resigning after what has been a disheartening season for the club so far. New manager McCann will be hoping that a visit from the champions of England can give the players a much-needed boost, and maybe ignite a run of good form.
A good run in the FA Cup is a handy change of pace for the Posh, with the Championship side managing an excellent 2-0 win against QPR at home in the 4th round. Goals from Joe Ward and Ricky-Jade Jones were enough for the Posh to be entered into the 5th round draw. Peterborough fans are no doubt enthralled by the thought of seeing some of football's biggest names visiting the Weston Homes Stadium.
Life in the Championship so far has been deemed a step too far for the Posh. However, in their previous campaign, Peterborough had a fantastic season. Finishing second in League One, with 87 points, gaining automatic promotion to the EFL Championship. Forward Jonson Clarke-Harris managed a sublime 31 league goals in the 20/21 campaign. The striker has struggled to replicate such form this season, however, only managing 5 goals in 28 league matches. Nonetheless, those 5 goals do make him joint-top scorer for Peterborough this season along with Siriki Dembele, who is no longer a Peterborough player after signing for Bournemouth in January.
This will only be the second time in history that Manchester City have played Peterborough United. The first, and most recent game was a 1-0 away win for City in the 5th round of the FA Cup in 1981. The only goal of the match coming from Tommy Booth. In that season, Manchester City went on to reach the final. A 1-1 draw with Tottenham Hotspur in front of 100,000 people at Wembley forced a replay. In the replay, however, just five days later, Spurs were victorious, coming back from 2-1 down to win the game 3-2, snatching the FA Cup away from City.
Referee: Andrew Madley
Assistants: Edward Smart & Adrian Holmes
Fourth Official: Josh Smith
Written by: @CharleyLongden
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