anchester City have almost a fully-fit squad to pick from for today’s clash with Fulham, but Nathan Ake will once again miss out.
Ake remains sidelined with a hamstring injury but Pep Guardiola says the defender is making good progress in his recovery.
“He’s much better,” said Guardiola. “His symptomology is good, the player knows his body and his reaction, but still he’s not training with the team. Everyone is fit except Nathan.”
Manuel Akanji dropped into the left-back spot for the midweek win over Arsenal but Guardiola could shuffle his pack at Craven Cottage.
Aymeric Laporte or Sergio Gomez could deputise in a return to the 3-2-4-1 system recently favoured by City, but switched away from against the Gunners.
Riyad Mahrez and Phil Foden are pushing to replace Bernardo Silva and Jack Grealish on the wings with rotations likely.
The games are coming thick and fast for the reigning Premier League champions, who would go top with a win. After facing Fulham, they take on West Ham, Leeds, Real Madrid twice, Everton, Chelsea and Brighton before their next free midweek.
Predicted Man City XI: Ederson; Akanji, Dias, Laporte; Stones, Rodri; Mahrez, Gundogan, De Bruyne, Grealish; Haaland.
City moved to within two points of Arsenal by beating the Gunners this week, and also have two games in hand. With Arsenal not playing until Tuesday, Pep Guardiola’s side can go top of the table for 48 hours and still have a game in hand over their rivals.
However, standing in their way will be a stubborn Fulham side, who held City off for 94 minutes at the Etihad earlier in the season. After City went ahead, Fulham equalised when Joao Cancelo was sent off and conceded a penalty. Erling Haaland returned from injury off the bench to score a late winner, with Guardiola calling the victory one of the best in his time at the club.
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Read how our writers think City should line up at Craven Cottage and use the interactive team selector to pick your best starting XI:
Manu Akanji was preferred at left-back for his defensive skills against Bukayo Saka, but Aymeric Laporte probably takes that spot on Sunday with City looking to be more on the front foot. It is really hard to leave a defender out at the moment given the form they are all in, and Kyle Walker added to that with a strong performance against Arsenal.
The same rings true further up the pitch as well, with Riyad Mahrez deserving to come back in after his hat-trick at Wembley and Phil Foden also needing a start at some point. I’d leave Foden until West Ham but bring in Mahrez for Bernardo with the intention of splitting his minutes with Ilkay Gundogan over the next two.