By Paul Conatzer
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Marco Silva didn’t really spend a lot of time talking about Manchester City in Friday’s press conference. He didn’t really have to.
Despite losing 2-0 to Chelsea in their last outing and dropping out of first place in the Premier League, Pep Guardiola’s City squad remain the favourites to repeat as league champions.
In his press conference, Guardiola said he was impressed with the way Everton have been playing.
“Marco Silva always has his teams well organized,” Guardiola said. “They are a top team.”
Richarlison and Sigurdsson and good players, he added. “He (Richarlison) is strong, fast and good in the air.”
Everton and City have drawn the last two league matches at The Etihad Stadium, 1-1. Guardiola says it will be different Everton team than last season.
There have been many changes for the Blues. Silva will be the third Everton manager to visit The Etihad in the past two season with Everton hiring and firing Ronald Koeman and Sam Allardyce in that time frame. The two scorers, Wayne Rooney and Romelu Lukaku have also left Everton. Lukaku has moved on to City’s biggest rivals in Manchester United.
Guardiola said Sergio Aguero and Kevin De Bruyne may be fit enough to play against Everton.
Silva said no matter which 11 City puts on the pitch, they are a very good team.
“They have a lot of quality in the attack-line. David Silva, Bernard Silva, what is the big difference? De Bruyne has played twice, maybe three games and I didn’t see a big difference in City without him. It’s possible they don’t play, Fernandinho and Aguero, but I think they will be available and it will be a strong team we face.”
Everton will be waiting to see if tenacious midfielder Idrissa Gueye is able to play.
The Blues are coming off two disappointing home draws to Newcastle and Watford, which knocked them out of the top six. Silva said despite playing well in periods in their last two matches, lack of concentration hurt them. Silva didn’t say anything about changing penalty takers despite Gylfi Sigurdsson missing his second of the season in three attempts against Watford.
Even if Everton concentrate for all 90 minutes, getting a result against City will be tough.