Norwich vs Manchester City 15:00
Despite Robert Snodgrass’ early strike, Norwich could not hold onto their lead and eventually lost 2-1 at Cardiff last weekend to leave them just two points above the relegation zone.
Leroy Fer has been a solid acquisition for the Norwich midfield this term, providing some strength and stability in the middle of the park for the Canaries. At times he has been somewhat lax in his defensive discipline though. He currently ranks second on the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index for fouls with 40.
John Ruddy continues to be one of the busiest ‘keepers in the league this season, something his manager will want his defence to address is they are to stay out of the bottom three. Only Cardiff’s David Marshall (95) can top Ruddy’s tally of 80 saves this term.
Striker Gary Hooper has been turning in some solid performances this season as he continues to settle in well to life at Carrow Road. With Nathan Redmond topping the pile at Norwich for attempts on goal (36), Hooper still has an admirable total to his name (23), and even Redmond cannot match Hooper’s squad-best shot accuracy rate of 65.2%. Hooper is 15/4 with 888sport.com to score at any time this weekend.
No Norwich player has been more efficient in their use of the ball in opposition territory this season than Alexander Tettey. On average he’s completed a pass in the opponent’s half once every 3.6 minutes this campaign, a squad-best.
Manchester City were unable to outmuscle Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea on Monday, eventually succumbing to their first home league defeat of the season. Manuel Pellegrini will be looking for them to bounce back from their 1-0 loss immediately against Norwich to ensure the gap between his side and Arsenal is not allowed to grow any wider.
Such is their strength in depth Manchester City have still been able to thrive without Sergio Aguero when necessary. Having him back is always a boon though, given that the Argentinean currently ranks second on the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index for shots on target this season with 35. As an overall representation of his stats this term, this gives him the best overall shot accuracy rate (60.3%) of any player in the top 10 in the league for on-target attempts.
Although his defensive abilities are well known, Aleskander Kolarov has certainly been making his presence felt in front of goal this season. No defender in the league can top his 27 attempts on goal. Kolarov is 39/10 with 888sport.com to score at any time this weekend.
Fellow defensive colleague Pablo Zabaleta is another who has been impressing once again this season, allowing some of the more attacking-minded players in front of him to flourish thanks to some exceptional defending. Not only is he one of a small group of players to have attempted more than 100 tackles (108), he’s also won 74.1% of them.
He endured a difficult time against Nemanja Matic on Monday evening but it’s difficult to see Yaya Toure’s influence waning any time soon given his form to date this season. He ranks second in the league, behind only Arsenal’s Mesut Ozil, for passes completed in the opponent’s half with 874 at an average rate of one every 2.3 minutes.