Crystal Palace come up against a side with a 100 per cent home record in the Premier League when they make the trip to Manchester City on Saturday.
Manuel Pellegrini’s men have notched up an impressive list of results at the Etihad Stadium so far this season, banging in seven goals past Norwich, six against both Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal and four against Newcastle and Manchester United.
The Citizens defeated Liverpool by a much tighter 2-1 margin on Boxing Day, with their only home defeat of the campaign so far coming against European champions Bayern Munich at the start of October.
Despite City’s imperious form at home though, Palace will make the journey north full of confidence following their last-gasp win over Aston Villa on Boxing Day.
The 1-0 victory at Villa Park was the Eagles second away league win on the last four attempts – and their fifth clean sheet in eight matches, dating back to the 0-0 draw with Everton on 9th November.
The Boxing Day triumph also moved Tony Pulis’ men out of the bottom three and they will be looking to upset the odds by taking something from the City clash to preserve their place above the drop zone.
Manchester City: The hosts will be without top scorer Sergio Aguero, who is expected to return later this month after suffering a calf injury.
England defender Micah Richards is the other longer-term absentee, with a hamstring problem ruling him out for another few weeks, while Martin Demichellis is nursing a similar knock.
On the plus side for City, Manuel Pellegrini should have Stevan Jovetic available for selection again after missing the Boxing Day win over Liverpool through illness.
Crystal Palace: Marouane Chamakh could return to the starting XI after serving a one-match suspension at Villa Park on Boxing Day.
There are no fresh injury concerns for Tony Pulis following that game, but Stuart O’Keefe and Kagisho Dikgacoi will both face fitness tests to see if they can return to the matchday squad.
Jerome Thomas is still fighting his way back to fitness after a calf injury, while Adlene Guedioura is still a couple of weeks away from a first team return after suffering two fractured ribs in the defeat to West Bromwich Albion back in November.
Jack Hunt (broken ankle), Glenn Murray (cruciate ligament) and Paddy McCarthy (groin) are all hoping to force their way into Pulis’ 25-man squad at the end of this month as they continue their recoveries from long-term injuries.
Referee: Andre Marriner
Assistants: S Massey and M Perry
Fourth Official: J Moss
|Man City wins||Draws||Palace wins|
LAST MEETING AT THE ETIHAD
Manchester City ran out 3-1 winners over Crystal Palace on the Eagles only visit to the Etihad Stadium back in January 2005 – when the arena was then still known as the City of Manchester Stadium.
Shaun Wright-Phillips fired the Citizens into an early lead, which was doubled by Robbie Fowler with just 15 minutes on the clock.
Centre back Darren Powell got Palace back into the game with a little over half an hour played and the visitors piled on the pressure as they went in search of an equaliser.
But Wright-Phillips, son of former Palace striker, Ian Wright, popped up again in the 90th minute to seal a 3-1 victory for the Blues.
A limited of number of tickets still remain for Palace supporters in the away end for Saturday’s trip to the Etihad Stadium.
Tickets will be available from the stadium box office, situated at the north end of the stadium.
Palace supporters will need to produce their season ticket or membership cards when purchasing tickets, which are available at the following prices:
£23.00 Juniors U16yrs
£31.00 Senior concessions 65+yrs
£25.00 Juniors U16yrs
£33.00 Senior concessions 65+yrs
Man City win: 1/7
Palace win: 22/1
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Alternatively, you can follow minute-by-minute text updates on the club’s official Twitter account, @Official_CPFC.