Capital One Cup: Man City clash with Bruce’s wounded Tigers
Lee Gormley | November 30, 2015
Manchester City v Hull City
- Capital One Cup quarter-final
- Tuesday, December 1st
- Kick-off: 19:45 GMT
- The Etihad Stadium, Manchester
Man City host wounded Tigers at Etihad
Manchester City host Championship contenders Hull City in their Capital One Cup quarter-final encounter at the Etihad Stadium, with the Tigers facing an uphill task having not won an away clash against the Sky Blues since 1930.
Steve Bruce’s Tigers will arrive in Manchester as a wounded second-tier animal, after suffering their first loss since September at the hands of Derby County last time out, as they surrendered top spot in the Championship with that 2-0 defeat.
Manuel Pellegrini’s City have won just one of their previous three league outings, but still remain at the Premier League’s summit on goal difference, and their indifferent form in recent weeks will give Hull hope with the visitors 12/1 from Coral to cause an upset within 90 minutes.
Bruce believes in more cup magic
Hull’s boss is hopeful that his side can spring a surprise on their travels, despite the Tigers having lost three of the last four meetings with City. Though Bruce is driven by the Championship club’s former FA Cup run during the 2013/14 campaign, when they were outdone 3-2 by Arsenal in the final, having led 2-0 early on.
“Once you get to this stage, Man City will be looking at it and thinking Arsenal are out, Chelsea are out, Man United are out,” stated Bruce, whose men are 6/1 to qualify for the semi-finals.
“So there’s a path forward for them and we can only think the same thing. If we can mount a great upset, then we’ll give ourselves a chance, which we did 18 months ago in the FA Cup.
“Let’s go and have a crack..”
“You look at their squad and there is so much depth. They bring on [Wilfried] Bony, [David] Silva’s on the bench and they can move Yaya Toure into a centre forward position.
“Really it doesn’t matter who you play. It’s what we are going to do to try and stop them from playing like we did last year in the Premier League, when we were only a minute away from beating them, so let’s go and have a crack.”
In recent seasons, City have battered Hull 4-1 and 5-1, as well as many wins to nil, making the hosts 27/10 to dispatch four or more again this time out and 31/20 to win both halves on home turf.
Silva set for starting role
Pellegrini may choose to deploy several young guns such as Kelechi Iheanacho and Patrick Roberts in this League Cup encounter, who are 11/10 and 2/1 respectively to strike anytime, but the Chilean coach will be boosted by a possible return for Spaniard Silva.
The pivotal playmaker could make his first start for two months in this quarter-final meeting, giving Bruce’s Tigers even more cause for concern, though prolific frontman Sergio Aguero is unlikely to be risked following a knock during the 3-1 win over Southampton.
Spain international Silva is 5/1 to open proceedings on his potential return to competitive action, while fellow attacker Kevin De Bruyne, who has shone in his teammate’s absence, is evens to dispatch another goal during normal time.
Abel Hernandez will be Hull’s key attacking threat and is 5/1 to strike anytime in 90 minutes, having done so in this fixture last term, Shaun Maloney is 9/2 to grab only a second career goal against City.
Davies demands reaction
Having tasted a rare defeat to Derby last Friday, Hull defender Curtis Davies has rallied his teammates, claiming they risk facing a “pasting” by City if they don’t bounce back positively.
“It is frustrating but it’s the first time we have lost in a long while. We need to put things into perspective. And we need to go again on Tuesday against Manchester City because it will be a big game in terms of how we react,” Davies declared.
“It won’t be the most important match for our season, but if you go there with your heads down you could be on the other end of a pasting.
“Having been part of an FA Cup final team I know how important these competitions are to the fans. We will be going there with the aim to upset the odds.”
Hull will hope to emulate their FA Cup heroics from last year in order to get a result at the Etihad, while Man City are aiming to move one step closer to another appearance at Wembley and potentially add further silverware to their growing cabinet of honours.
Read our Capital One Cup archive