Manuel Pellegrini

Manchester City v Everton: COC preview

2016-01-27
Everton are 11/10 to reach the Capital One Cup final at Manchester City’s expense as they take a one-goal lead to the Etihad Stadium. The Toffees gave themselves a chance of reaching Wembley with their 2-1 victory in the first leg of their semi-final but their poor Premier League form is a concern.

Everton are 11/10 to reach the Capital One Cup final at Manchester City’s expense as they take a one-goal lead to the Etihad Stadium.

The Toffees gave themselves a chance of reaching Wembley with their 2-1 victory in the first leg of their semi-final but their poor Premier League form is a concern.

Everton have won just one of their last 10 Premier League matches to slip to 12th in the table and City remain the favourites to go through at 17/24, with Everton boss Roberto Martinez believing his side have nothing to lose.

“It will be an enormous landmark for the club if we can reach the final of the League Cup,” he said. “I don't think we have anything to lose. Everyone expects Man City to win and to get into the final.”

Captain Phil Jagielka will return to the centre of defence alongside John Stones, who was criticised after his error led to Swansea's opening goal on Sunday. The duo helped keep City out in a goalless draw two weeks ago and Everton are 13/2 for the clean sheet which would ensure they go through.

“It would be daft to say that you don't miss a player like Phil Jagielka,” added Martinez. “His influence is always there. Phil is a real influence in the dressing room and it is important he is fully refreshed.”

City are 17/24 to get through and 11/9 to win the second leg by more than one goal but boss Manuel Pellegrini knows his team will have to overcome highly-motivated opposition.

“It is the third time we are going to play against Everton in a month, so we know all about their team,” he said. “We know the way they play and their important players.

“But our performance is more important in trying to decide this semi-final at home. It is as important for us as it is them, it is important to play in the final at Wembley.

“Maybe Everton, who have not been in a final in many years, will be more motivated but I am sure our team will do all they can to play the final. One of the most important things is to reflect desire, a desire to play another final at Wembley.”

City must chase the tie, with a 1-0 victory after 90 minutes enough to secure extra time, but Pellegrini will not let the aggregate score alter his game plan.

The Chilean said: “For both teams it is better not to play extra time but if we need to do it we will. I think it is more important to start not thinking about what you need and if you score an early goal to think the game is finished. 

“We are not going to change our style of play. We need to win here. We will try to score from the beginning.”

Willy Caballero will take over in goal for City, having been preferred to Joe Hart in all domestic knockout games this season. They remain without captain Vincent Kompany (calf), Eliaquim Mangala (hamstring), Aleksandar Kolarov (calf), Wilfried Bony (calf) and Samir Nasri (hamstring).

Midfielder Muhamed Besic (hamstring) and forward Kevin Mirallas (tendon) have been ruled out for Everton while Joel Robles will replace Tim Howard in goal.