Manchester City‘s Premier League match against West Ham has been postponed due to bad weather caused by Storm Ciara.
Pep Guardiola’s side were due to host the Hammers at 16:30 on Sunday afternoon but it has now been announced that the game will not take place due to poor weather conditions.
A Man City statement said: “Due to extreme and escalating weather conditions and in the interests of supporter and staff safety, today’s match has been postponed.
“This decision has been made by Manchester City’s Safety Officer following consultation with Club stakeholders and officials at West Ham United.
“Further information regarding the rescheduling of today’s match will be published in due course.”
⚠ MATCH POSTPONED ⚠
Due to extreme and escalating weather conditions and in the interests of supporter and staff safety, today’s @premierleague match against West Ham has been postponed.
— Manchester City (@ManCity) February 9, 2020
Man City are currently second in the table, 14 points clear of fifth-placed Tottenham Hotspur and are expected to remain in the top four with 13 games remaining.
However, the cancellation means that leaders Liverpool may be able to increase their huge lead even further, depending on when Man City‘s clash with West Ham is able to be rearranged for.
Both Man City and West Ham are due to begin their winter breaks this week and Guardiola’s side already have a congested fixture list as they are also competing in the Champions League knockout stages.
Last five meetings: Man City vs West Ham
17 Jul 2019: Man City 4-1 West Ham (Premier League Asia Trophy)
27 February 2019: Man City 1-0 West Ham (Premier League)
24 November 2018: West Ham 0-4 Man City (Premier League)
29 April 2018: West Ham 1-4 Man City (Premier League)
Aggregate Score: Man City (WWWWW) 18-2 West Ham (LLLLL)
Ones to watch
Man City: Riyad Mahrez
With Raheem Sterling expected to miss the visit of West Ham, there will be a lot of expectation on Riyad Mahrez to provide the creative spark from the wing. And that’s something he is more than capable of.
Mahrez has been directly involved in 14 Premier League goals this season despite not being a regular starter at Man City and has stepped up his game in recent weeks, with Sterling out of form.
The Algerian’s technical ability will be key for Man City‘s onslaught on the West Ham defence, which will undoubtedly be set up to suck the life out of the game.
Key stat: Riyad Mahrez is one of just four players to score at least seven goals and record seven assists in the Premier League this season.
West Ham: Jarrod Bowen
West Ham needed something new up front to try and keep their Premier League spot and that’s exactly what they have with Jarrod Bowen.
The 23-year-old, a January signing from Hull City, blew the Championship away in the first half of the season, scoring 16 goals and adding seven assists – truly the Tigers’ key man.
But now he has a bigger task on his hands, with very little time to get comfortable. It’s up to Bowen to build an understanding with the likes of Sebastien Haller and what better place to make an instant impact than at the Etihad.
Key stat: Jarrod Bowen was directly involved in 24 goals in 32 games for Hull City this season, before signing for West Ham.
Man City will be without Oleksandr Zinchenko who is suspended after getting sent off against Tottenham and is likely to be replaced by Benjamin Mendy, should the Frenchman be fit.
Guardiola is also hoping to call upon Aymeric Laporte after he missed the Tottenham defeat, having only just returned from injury. But Raheem Sterling is a doubt.
Predicted XI: Ederson; Walker, Fernandinho, Otamendi, Mendy; De Bruyne, Rodri, D Silva; Mahrez, Aguero, B Silva.
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West Ham remain without Andriy Yarmolenko, Felipe Anderson and Jack Wilshere but will be able to call upon new signing Jarrod Bowen for the first time.
Whether Moyes opts to use Bowen from the start or as a substitute remains to be seen, but the 23-year-old could replace one of Michail Antonio or Robert Snodgrass on the wings.
Predicted XI: Fabianski; Fredericks, Diop, Ogbonna, Cresswell; Rice; Snodgrass, Noble, Soucek, Bowen; Haller.
Man City thrashed West Ham on the opening day of the season, a win that appeared to be a statement of intent for the campaign ahead. Things haven’t exactly worked to plan for Pep Guardiola‘s side but that should not stop them from another rout this weekend.
With every passing week, West Ham look increasingly likely to be relegated and, even with the addition of Bowen, beating Man City could prove too big a task.