Manchester City-Newcastle United Preview
Pep Guardiola is not ready to relent in his pursuit of glory with Manchester City, quickly turning his attention to the Champions League final and then next season's Premier League title defence.
City visit Newcastle United on Friday in their first match since being crowned English champions for the third time in four years.
After Guardiola's side lost to Chelsea last weekend, it fell to Leicester City to complete the job on their behalf, beating second-placed Manchester United.
Guardiola described a party following that result - "we drank a little bit, we danced, we hugged a lot" - but is already looking forward.
After visiting Newcastle, City have just two more league games before facing Chelsea in their European showpiece.
"Now we have two weeks ahead of us and a dream come true to play in the final of the Champions League," Guardiola said.
"And the show must go on next season. So we're going to try to be strong next season."
The City manager has a fan in the form of former United captain Steve Bruce, now head coach at Newcastle, who would be unsurprised by his opposite number's comments.
"He always has this unbelievable, insatiable appetite to succeed - a little bit like my old boss Sir Alex (Ferguson)," Bruce said.
"It's never enough to just win it. As soon as he wins it, it's on to the next one. He is quite simply the best manager in the world at the moment, in my opinion."
Kevin De Bruyne will miss the Newcastle game, but his boss says City are using the remaining league fixtures as preparation for the Chelsea final.
"Before that, we have three games to get information about how the team is and the players to play in the last game of the season," Guardiola added.
Newcastle United - Joelinton
Much has been made of Callum Wilson's return to form and fitness coinciding with Newcastle's improved run, but their sequence of better results started with Joelinton in the side. The forward could now be tasked with leading the line again following Wilson's latest injury setback.
Manchester City - Sergio Aguero
Aguero has had a far more storied Premier League career than Joelinton, but he will not reflect fondly on last week's outing against Chelsea. He missed an awful penalty and later apologised. City's all-time leading goalscorer has an outstanding record against Newcastle, though, and will hope to get the chance to make amends.
- Newcastle United have won one of their past 26 Premier League matches against Manchester City (D4 L21), winning 2-1 in January 2019 despite going behind in the opening minute.
- City have won one of their past four away Premier League games against Newcastle (D2 L1), going ahead in all three games they failed to win.
- Guardiola's side have won their past 11 away Premier League matches and a win in this match would see them break the all-time record in the top four tiers of English league football, currently held by Chelsea in 2008 and Manchester City themselves in 2017.
- In all competitions, City are unbeaten in 22 away matches (W20 D2), the longest ever run by an English top-flight team. Should they avoid defeat here, they will break the record away unbeaten run by a team in England's top four tiers, with Notts County also going 22 without defeat on the road between February and December 2012 as a League One side.
- Aguero has scored 15 goals in 14 Premier League appearances against Newcastle, averaging a goal every 61 minutes. Only three players have scored 16-plus goals against an opponent in the competition - Alan Shearer against Leeds United (20) and both Les Ferdinand and Shearer against Everton (both 16).
Updated May 13, 2021