Watford welcome Manchester City to Vicarage Road in a crucial clash at both ends of the Premier League table.
Depending on results elsewhere earlier on Saturday, Watford could head into this match looking to climb as high as 11th in the table with victory.
Man City meanwhile can go top with a win if Chelsea fail to win away at West Ham on Saturday lunchtime.
Adam Masina is ruled out for Watford after suffering a thigh injury during Wednesday’s defeat to Chelsea.
Ben Foster (groin), Peter Etebo (quad), Kwadwo Baah (ankle), Francisco Sierralta, Nicolas N’Koulou (both hamstring), Ismaila Sarr and Ken Sema (knee) remain absent.
Man City could be without Kyle Walker, John Stones and Ilkay Gundogan as the trio all struggle with knocks.
Aymeric Laporte is available after serving an one match ban in their midweek win at Aston Villa but Kevin De Bruyne (Coronavirus), Ferran Torres (foot), Liam Delap (ankle) and Benjamin Mendy (personal) are still ruled out.
- Watford have lost each of their last ten league meetings against Manchester City (L10).
- Man City are unbeaten in their last six league visits to Vicarage Road (W5, D1).
- City have kept clean sheets in their last three matches against Watford in all competitions, during which they netted 18 goals across those three games.
- Imran Louza has been booked in Watford’s last two home matches with both yellow cards coming in the 45th minute.
- Four of Man City’s last five conceded league goals have been leaked in the second half.
Watford can take heart from their midweek loss to Chelsea because they were excellent in their pressing on the counterattack with great team spirit, which caused the Blues serious issues but their defence were just outplayed clinically at times.
Man City meanwhile were relentless in the first half at Villa which proved crucial to their win because the Villains did cause plenty of issues throughout the second half, yet City’s defence in the second half was well disciplined to deny Villa a draw.
This game will also be tough because Watford have improved under Ranieri so won’t be easy to beat so I expect a competitive tussle here, yet City do have enough quality to find the win and extend their strong form against the Hornets.
Prediction: Watford 1-2 Manchester City
Result: Watford 1-3 Manchester City