The game on Monday is basically the big spenders against the little spenders. Both teams have very different Premier League aspirations this season. One team are aiming for their first Premier League title... and the other is Man City.
Jokes aside, the bookmakers price Swansea at 12/1 to win the 90 minute match with the majority of football fans believing Swansea will leave the Eithad Stadium a broken team, being smashed 7-0.
But we know this will not be the case.
Swansea have had a comfortable pre-season, with highlights being wins over Celtic and Real Betis, and have strengthened an already solid team with the likes of Danny Graham, Wayne Routledge and Michael Vorm. The travelling Swans will go into the game confident that they can function as a slick unit, though will be aware that they are massive underdogs.
Swansea's defence is probably the weakest area as it stands going into the first match, with Garry Monk ruled out due to an ongoing foot injury and Neil Taylor still serving his three match ban thanks to the sending off against Nottingham Forest in May. Ferrie Bodde is another, almost permanent feature on the injured list, though this should come as no surprise.
With the exclusions in the squad outlined, my team to face Man City would be:
Rangel Caulker Williams Tate
Dyer Allen Dobbie Britton Sinclair
I'm sure this won't be much different to what many of you would want to see and very close to the actual team Brendan Rodgers will field, perhaps using Agustien or a third holding midfielder instead of Dobbie for added defensive strength. However, without Dobbie Swansea have sometimes struggled to create, so dropping him may not be wise if the Swans want to look for an opening win, or a draw should Man City score first.
It's certainly going to be Vorm between the posts; even though he has had little experience with the team, he is a highly capable keeper and will boost team confidence. The wings pick themselves and Danny Graham is the natural first choice striker, finally getting his first goal in a white shirt against Real Betis last week.
As Man City go, the influential goalscorer Carlos Tevez is not expected to play on Monday, though breathing a sigh of relief is not advisable with the likes of Balotelli, Silva, Santa Cruz, Dzeko, Clichy and other World Class talent ready to test Alan Tate's men. It's a high quality side which is finally looking more of a unit than a miscellaneous group of primadonnas. The FA Cup winners will accept nothing less than a win to kick off their potential Premier League winning campaign.
Despite a defensive blip in the Community Shield match against Man United last week, City are strong at the back. Led by midfielder-turned-defender Vincent Kompany, Man City conceded the fewest goals in the Premier League last season (joint with Chelsea) and, with the England number one, Joe Hart, in goals, scoring against City will not be easy.
With all this in mind, my prediction is a 3-1 win to Man City. Naturally, as a Swansea blogger, I hope I am drastically wrong, with Swansea grabbing a tight 1-0 victory, though the odds of this happening are 25/1 (PaddyPower). If you do want to bet on this game, it may be advisable to put something on Swansea, as the odds are generous and we all know the start of a new season can throw up many upsets. 1-0 to Swansea, with Scott Sinclair as the scorer is a huge 150/1! Being a realistic scoreline and a realistic scorer that's a bet certainly worth a pound!
Silly-odds-checked-so-you-don't-have-to: Alan Tate to score first and Swansea to win 9-0 is 4000/1. Don't.
From Wembley to the Manchester, Swansea City are about to prove there is one Premier League team in Wales!
I think Taylor will start at left back and Williams as captain partnering Caulker.
Augustein in midfield instead of Allen also.
No matter what - it is going to be a great morning (am in Sydney) when they run out!
3-1 to Man City was my prediction also. Specifically though, I have this vision of a terrible start, going 3-0 down at half time, but pulling a goal back in the second half. Wow, that sounds pretty negative now that I've typed it out. However, I have put £2 on the win, which Betfair actually have at 14/1 (£2 being the minimum stake with them).ReplyDelete
Thanks for the comment Bilgola Swan - enjoy the match down under!ReplyDelete
And Joe - while it does sound negative, it also sounds pretty realistic! Man City will be hard to not concede against, but scoring is possible, so 3-1 sounds about right.
I have covered 1-0 and Scott Sinclair as the scorer though. At 150/1 it seemed too good value not to! Alan Tate will have to put in an amazing performance for it to happen though!