Premier League Preview: Manchester City vs. Newcastle United

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  • Man City 4W-1D in last 5 vs. NUFC
  • Magpies won cup game at Etihad in 2014
  • Newcastle leads all-time 71W-39D-67L

This could get ugly.

Manchester City dropped points six times in last season’s title run, and won each and every follow-up match with a combined score line of 19-6.

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So Newcastle United can enter Saturday’s contest at the Etihad Stadium knowing it will face a feisty bunch of reigning champs when it kicks off against City at 12:30 p.m. ET (Watch live on NBC and online via NBCSports.com).

The Magpies haven’t won a league contest against City in 21 tries, and have just one point this season. Losses to Spurs and Chelsea are sandwiched around a draw at Cardiff, and the Magpies lost a League Cup outing at Nottingham Forest at midweek.

What they’re saying

Pep Guardiola on if Rafa Benitez will use five at the back“Last season he did it against us away and at home, so I don’t know. I didn’t speak with Rafa so I don’t know. We have to adapt. He believes that’s the best way for them to get points and we’re going to adapt and we’ll try to defend well against any system they want to play. We see the quality of our players. I guess the way they’re going to play. After five minutes I’ll know their idea and pick up the behaviors of my players, the way they are training and what we need exactly for that game.”

Benitez on facing Man City“We know that it’s not easy to play against Man City or Chelsea and we know our players better than anybody. We are trying to get a result for the club and for the team. The way to do it? Of course I’d like to play with three strikers and attack them from the beginning and press high. But we have seen a lot of examples of what happens when you try that against Man City. They are really good at counter attacking. When you are in the middle of the pitch they can still kill you in the wide areas. They have pace, ability and runs behind the defenders. Anybody that has played as a defender knows what that means.”

Prediction

Man City runs a bit wild, but Benitez limits the damage to a 4-1 loss.