Man City predicted line-up vs. Brighton with three big changes made following international break

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The latest team news, injury updates and predicted XI as Man City aim to avoid a third consecutive Premier League defeat against Brighton and Hove Albion.

Manchester City will return to Premier League action this weekend, following an international break that saw Gareth Southgate’s England side book their place in Germany for Euro 2024, after they followed up a 1-0 friendly victory against Australia with a clinical, Jude Bellingham-inspired 3-1 victory over Italy at Wembley Stadium.

The Citzens get their campaign back underway with a tough-looking home game against Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday. Just two points and three places separate the two sides ahead of the Etihad Stadium clash as City look to bounce back from their defeat at Arsenal and avoid a third consecutive league defeat.

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Pep Guardiola has several major calls to make as he enjoys the benefit of having a squad that is approaching full fitness. However, key midfield duo Rodri (suspended) and Kevin De Bruyne (hamstring injury) will miss out, meaning the Spaniard could hand opportunities to the likes of Rico Lewis, Kalvin Phillips and John Stones when his side meet Roberto Di Zerbi’s men.

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What has Pep Guardiola said about Rodri’s absence?

The only short-term absentee for Pep Guardiola is influential midfielder Rodri as he serves the final game of a three-match suspension. The Spain international was dismissed for violent conduct after he grabbed Nottingham Forest midfielder Morgan Gibbs-White by the throat during City’s 2-0 home win against Steve Cooper’s side last month.

“Hopefully Rodri will learn,” Guardiola said after the game. He had to control himself and his emotions. I can get a yellow card, but Rodri can’t. I don’t play - the guys who do have to be careful.

“Kyle has done this in the past - they know they shouldn’t do it - but it is emotions. Whatever happens, you have to control yourself. I am angry, because I don’t like playing with 10 men. I said to the players at half-time to be careful because of what had happened in the last 10 minutes (of the first half) but we fell into the trap.”

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When is Kevin de Bruyne expected to return for Manchester City?

The Belgian midfielder is currently making his way back from a hamstring injury that was initially suffered in the Champions League Final win against Inter Milan. De Bruyne did feature in the Community Shield against Arsenal and was handed a start in the Premier League opener at Burnley.

However, the City star lasted just 23 minutes as he succumbed to the injury once again at Turf Moor and was expected to be out of action until the new year. In his latest update, Pep Guardiola suggested De Bruyne’s rapid progress in his rehabilitation means he could make an earlier than expected return.

Speaking earlier this week, he said: “Different timings because he comes in for treatment but I see him every day and he’s getting better, his mood is good. Hopefully sooner than expected he will be back.”

Manchester City predicted XI

Ederson, Kyle Walker, Ruben Dias, Josko Gvardiol, Nathan Ake, Mateo Kovacic, John Stones, Bernardo Silva, Jack Grealish, Julian Alvarez, Erling Haaland.

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