Man City vs Brentford predictions: Haaland-led City to hammer Bees
- Manchester City have won four of their seven home PL games by three goals or more
- Brentford have conceded 11 goals in their last three PL away games -
- Recommended Bet: Back Man City -2
Manchester City can jump above leaders Arsenal again with a home victory against a mid-table Brentford side in Saturday's early Premier League kick-off.
The champions were made to sweat for their 2-1 Etihad win over Fulham last week, secured by Erling Haaland's stoppage-time penalty.
Pep Guardiola later declared his side's performance with only 10 men after Joao Cancelo's first-half red card to be one of the best in his seven years in charge.
City overcame Chelsea 2-0 in the Carabao Cup third round on Wednesday to maintain their momentum, but the Bees were bundled out on spot-kicks the night before by lowly League Two Gillingham.
That was hardly ideal preparation for the very-different test of facing a team that beat them home and away in their two Premier League clashes last season.
Despite being sent off against Fulham, Cancelo is available for selection after serving his one-match suspension in the League Cup in midweek.
The Portugal international will almost certainly start in a City backline that has generally featured three central defenders this season with John Stones, Manuel Akanji and Nathan Ake taking the roles last weekend.
Rodri, Kevin De Bruyne and Bernardo Silva could be the midfield combination with Haaland, Phil Foden and Jack Grealish the favourites to start up front.
Julian Alvarez, who started his fifth successive match in midweek, is due for a rest while Kalvin Phillips, who played his first minutes since mid-September on Wednesday, is likely to be on the bench again.
For Brentford, Christian Norgaard returned as captain for his first outing since late August and lasted until half-time against Gillingham.
The Denmark international will be gradually brought back into the first-team fold following an Achilles injury and seems a likely bench option.
Ivan Toney started on Tuesday after his weekend suspension and will continue up front for Thomas Frank, who admitted Vitaly Janelt has picked up a "minor muscle injury".
That ruled the German out of the League Cup fixture and it remains to be seen if he can force his way back into the line-up at the Etihad Stadium.
Frank confirmed that Kristoffer Ajer, Shandon Baptiste, Aaron Hickey and Pontus Jansson will be unavailable until after the World Cup.
Brentford have won just one of their five away league games against the Citizens, a 2-0 top-flight victory on Christmas Day 1937.
Manchester City have won each of their past 11 Premier League home games - their longest such run since a sequence of 14 on the bounce in the 2017-18 campaign.
Brentford are one of four teams yet to win away from home in the Premier League this season, with only Aston Villa, Nottingham Forest and Wolves gaining fewer points on the road than Frank's men.
The Bees were caught offside 10 times in the corresponding match last season - a 2-0 win for City - the most by a team in a Premier League game since Stoke vs Huddersfield in January 2018 (also 10).
After scoring 113 Premier League goals in 2021, City have managed just 58 in 2022 with three rounds of fixtures yet to play.
Manchester City match up really well to Brentford in that they hardly ever lose possession in areas that invite quick transitions and counter-attacks, nor are they vulnerable aerially at set-pieces.
The champions won both contests against the Bees last season without breaking sweat and another three points should be comfortably secured by the final whistle in Saturday's encounter.
Haaland's availability ought to make things easier for Guardiola's side, who do not look as potent when the Norwegian is not on the pitch, but they have far too much quality in attacking areas for Brentford's backline.
Only an inspired performance from David Raya could prevent City from covering the -2 Spread (3 Way), available to back at 19/20 with LiveScore Bet, as they have done in four of their seven previous home league games this season.