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Man City’s tactics surprised Huddersfield so much they didn’t know their own formation at kick-off

Sterling, Sane and Mahrez all on the bench?

Anyone who has watched Amazon’s Man City documentary will know how Pep Guardiola obsesses over the concept of perfection.

The reigning champions began their title defence with a comfortable 2-0 win at the Emirates last weekend.

Most would assume, tactically speaking, it would be more of the same at home to Huddersfield this Sunday afternoon.

Think again.

Borderline obessive

Reuters
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Borderline obessive

The replies to City’s team announcement on Twitter

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The replies to City’s team announcement on Twitter

City have responded to their 0-0 draw with the Terriers at the end of last season with a fresh approach that includes both Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus from the off.

Guardiola has opted for a 3-5-2 formation with John Stones, Vincent Kompany and Aymeric Laporte in a back three with Benjamin Mendy and Bernardo Silva at wing-backs.

Leroy Sane, Riyad Mahrez and Raheem Sterling all start on the bench…

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City’s team certainly surprised their opponents.

Huddersfield coaching staff told Sky Sports that they did not know how their team would line-up from kick-off.

David Wagner decided to wait until Guardiola showed his hand before organising his team in response.

It was more chess than football during the opening exchanges

PA:Press Association
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It was more chess than football during the opening exchanges

This is the most dramatic response to deep defensive blocks we’ve seen from City since Guardiola took charge.

The Eastlands club became the first team in English football history to reach 100 points in a season last campaign.

It stands to reason that many opponents will set up to frustrate such a rampant team.

Indeed, Huddersfield were the only team to prevent City from scoring at home in the league last season.

A strike partnership of Jesus and Aguero may be implemented frequently at home this season

Reuters
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A strike partnership of Jesus and Aguero may be implemented frequently at home this season

Guardiola’s new tactical variant is proof that his side have not allowed complacency to creep in over the summer.

It could be a long afternoon for Huddersfield, even with a back ten…

10-0-0?

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10-0-0?

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