Belfast Telegraph

Vincent Kompany expects David Moyes to do homework ahead of Man City clash

Vincent Kompany expects David Moyes to be studying the gameplans of Huddersfield and Southampton in search of a way to stop Manchester City.

But the City captain has warned the West Ham boss that the Premier League leaders also expect to have learnt from their last games as they bid to get back to their dynamic best on Sunday.

Huddersfield and Southampton both went close to ending City's long winning run but their efforts were ultimately undone by late Raheem Sterling goals.

Moyes' Hammers are the next visitors to the Etihad Stadium as City look to extend a winning run that now stretches to 19 games in all competitions and 12 in the Premier League.

Kompany said: "I put myself in the position if I was the manager of West Ham, I suppose I would've seen the images against Southampton and Huddersfield, I would've seen what causes trouble and I would've trained extremely hard on those points for that game.

"But if I was the City manager, I would've seen the same thing and I would've trained extremely hard on making sure these teams cannot exploit that."

Huddersfield and Southampton both adopted cautious approaches, absorbing considerable pressure by defending deep but then posing a threat with the occasional counter-attack or from set-pieces.

They may have fallen short but City, who earlier in the season enjoyed thumping wins over Liverpool (5-0), Watford (6-0), Crystal Palace (5-0) and Stoke (7-2), have been stifled.

Kompany said: "I can see a period of time where teams will try to play this approach but as teams will need points eventually, as teams will need to further their own agenda, I think it will settle again and we will have a more open game with both teams trying to win it.

"In this case it's proven nearly successful for the teams who did it, but at the same time as they're adopting this approach, we're learning how to deal with it as well, so as soon as we find a way through it, I think it'll change again."

Sunday's clash with West Ham will see the return to the Etihad Stadium of a former City favourite.

Pablo Zabaleta joined the Londoners in the summer after a nine-year spell at City that saw him win two Premier League titles, two League Cups and the FA Cup.

Such was the right-back's contribution to City's modern history, he was presented with a lifetime season ticket when he left.

Kompany said: "It'll be strange for him but I'm sure he'll get a warm reception.

"I kind of feel he'll be dreading this game as well a bit, knowing Zaba and knowing that he's been at the Etihad and seen what the players can do if it goes wrong for you.

"But knowing Zaba he'll probably rise up to the challenge and probably have his best game of the season.

"It'll be great and this place is always going to be his home, no matter what."

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