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Former Man City defender makes Pep Guardiola line-up prediction ahead of Copenhagen and Liverpool clashes



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Pep Guardiola is unlikely to weaken his side for the visit of Copenhagen this week, despite the upcoming clash with Liverpool and advantage from the first-leg.

City come into Wednesday night’s contest with a strong 3-1 advantage from the first-leg in Denmark, thanks to goals from Kevin De Bruyne, Bernardo Silva, and Phil Foden in a strong attacking display from the European champions.

Manchester City are in the middle of an impressive 19-game unbeaten run across all competitions, stretching back to mid-December and featuring a number of statement victories including a FIFA Club World Cup success in Saudi Arabia.

However, March presents a very different challenge for the Premier League champions, as they face a list of high-profile contests that could have a huge say on their trophy-winning ambitions for the remainder of the season.

While former Manchester City defender Joleon Lescott admitted he would rotate the squad for the visit of FC Copenhagen this week, he believes Pep Guardiola will take a different approach to the contest.

“I would take a different approach but I don’t think he will,” Lescott told TNT Sports. “You don’t get to the level that he’s got and maintained by doing that. He’s never suggested he’ll put out a so-called weakened team. I would probably look at (resting) Rodri and Kevin (De Bruyne).”

Lescott continued, “I’d be surprised if Kevin plays against Copenhagen because he looked a little bit tired yesterday in stages and Anfield will drain you, emotionally as well as physically, so the adrenaline will be so high and depending on how the game goes, you could be sapped before you know it in terms of your energy.

“So the opportunity to give Rodri and Kevin a real rest, I would do that if I was picking the team. But the likes of Kyle Walker, Phil Foden and (Erling) Haaland, you just play.”

Manchester City travel to face Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday evening, knowing that a victory would move them two points clear at the top and issue a bold statement to one of their primary title challengers this season.