Premier League Preview: Hull City vs. Manchester City

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  • Hull failed to score in 16 of their 38 league matches last season – but have yet to fail to net in their five league games in 2014-15.
  • Ten-man Manchester City won the last meeting at Hull by 2-0 in March.
  • City have gone three league games without a win – their worst run for 19 months. (BBC Sport)

Manchester City will hope for good fortuity as they travel on the road to face Hull City at KC Stadium, and NBC will have the coverage for you on NBC Sports Live Extra at 9:45 a.m. ET this Saturday.

Manuel Pellegrini’s side drew Chelsea last week, but, except for a surprise defeat to Stoke City,  hasn’t performed that poorly in the humble dawn of a new Premier League season. The Sky Blues did fall to Arsenal, 3-0, in an FA Cup match in early August and also lost to Bayern Munich, 1-0, to open their Champions League campaign. Last week, an on-loan Frank Lampard netted the game-tying goal against Chelsea for a 10-man City squad.

Similarly, Hull City drew their last competition, 2-2, against Newcastle. Right now, Steve Bruce’s team, right in the middle of the table in 10th place, sits nicely after concluding their 2013-14 season at 16th in the standings. This year, the Tigers have tied their opponents on three occasions and beat QPR back in August. Nonetheless, they haven’t been tested by a high-caliber Premier League team.

[WATCH ONLINE at NBC Sports Live Extra]

What they’re saying

Manchester City manger Manuel Pellegrini on regaining winning performances (EuroSport): “It was a very useful match (against Sheffield Wednesday) for our team. We were not scoring too many goals here at home. We did not win the last four games. We did not play badly but we didn’t win. It is always important to win in the way we did on Wednesday and I hope this can continue in the future – especially tomorrow against Hull because in the Premier League, we cannot drop many points.”

Hull City captain Curtis Davies on Manchester City’s Capital One Cup win over Sheffield Wednesday (TeamTalk): “Manchester City have got such strength in depth so to see some of the players they used in the cup surprised me, they must really want to win that competition. When I saw they had won 7-0 that was pretty shocking but I’m hoping that come the weekend they’ve burnt their legs out a little bit. They’re also looking forward to a Champions League game next week that they will feel they have to win and hopefully they might just take their eyes off the ball a little bit. If so, we might be able to take advantage.”

Player injuries/absences

Hull midfielder David Meyler is nursing a back injury, and he will have to ensure he’s ready to play from the outcome of back scans. Forward Gaston Ramirez looks set to miss this contest with a groin hinderance. Robert Snodgrass’ “out” status with his knee injury hasn’t changed.

City fullback Pablo Zabaleta can play once again after serving his one-match suspension due to a red card. Sergio Aguero and David Silva appear at full health after battling minor knocks. Samir Nasri, Stevan Jovetic and Fernando, though, will most likely miss this match, with a targeted return for the following week.

Prediction

Manchester City can definitely survive without Samir Nasri, and compared to Hull City, Manchester just has too much offensive talent to lose this game, unless the atmosphere of KC Stadium injects Hull with the energy needed to somehow the best the reigning PL champs. Manchester City, 3-1