Manchester City will be looking to pick up where they left off in the Premier League when they take on Leicester at the King Power Stadium on Saturday.
Prior to the international break, City made another emphatic statement as they rubbed salt into Arsenal wounds with a 5-0 thrashing at the end of August.
That result came at a time when City fans were left disappointed by the news that sought-after recruit Harry Kane would be remaining at Tottenham, while Cristiano Ronaldo opted against a sensational arrival at the Etihad by instead agreeing to a return to Manchester United.
Yet, even without the injured Kevin De Bruyne against Arsenal, and with Raheem Sterling and Riyad Mahrez on the bench, City displayed their depth and all-round strength to claim a second win of the season.
It sees City lying seventh on the log standings, but after just three completed rounds of action, it’s far too early to be worrying about table position. Nevertheless, it must be mentioned that they are just three log points adrift of current leaders Tottenham Hotspur.
City in fact are level with Leicester in effectively joint-third place, with Brendan Rodgers’ team having opened their campaign with wins over Wolves and Norwich City, but sandwiched in between was a disappointing 4-1 loss to West Ham.
What should make Saturday’s battle between Man City and Leicester even more fascinating is the fact that City could be without starting goalkeeper Ederson as well as senior centre forward Gabriel Jesus due to a ‘five-day travel rule’ imposed by the Brazilian Football Association.
While the majority of Guardiola’s squad featured in World Cup qualifying games, Ederson and Jesus did not travel, with the feud between club and country growing even further.
There has been speculation that the ban could be ignored, but under Article 22 of Fifa’s disciplinary code, that would then see City have to forfeit the match 3-0.
Talks are said to be continuing to resolve the matter, but if Ederson is unavailable, it would present a tricky situation for City as backup goalkeeper Zack Steffen, who played against Leicester in the Community Shield at Wembley, tested positive for Covid-19 during international duty with the United States.
Whatever the case may be, it should only add to what is set to be an enthralling battle as City seek revenge from their defeat suffered in that Community Shield clash.