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Match Previews


4 January 2024

Match Previews


4 January 2024

A look at Huddersfield Town’s Third Round opponents in the 2023/24 Emirates FA Cup

- Manchester City vs Huddersfield Town
- Emirates FA Cup Third Round tie preview
- Sunday 7 January 2024; 2pm kick-off

Having won the Premier League, Emirates FA Cup, UEFA Champions League, UEFA Super Cup and FIFA Club World Cup in 2023, Manchester City underlined their status as one of the best teams in the world last year.

The 81st meeting between the sides, Town and City last met in the Emirates FA Cup in the 2016/17 campaign, with a spirited 0-0 draw at the John Smith’s Stadium leading to a replay at the Etihad which the home side won 5-1, despite the Terriers taking an early lead through Harry Bunn.

With four subsequent Premier League fixtures between the two, Town are without victory against City since November 1999, with a Chris Beech header ending a run of 10 games unbeaten for City in the 1999/00 Division One season.


Having gone from strength-to-strength since their takeover by Sheikh Mansour in 2008, City are currently enjoying the most successive period in their history.

Amassing eight Premier League titles, three Emirates FA Cup’s, six Carabao Cup’s, three Community Shield’s, one UEFA Champions League, one UEFA Super Cup and one FIFA Club World Cup in that time, the blue side of Manchester has had 23 major trophy victories to celebrate in the last 16 years.

Currently third in the Premier League this season with a game in hand over those above them, they were knocked out of the Carabao Cup earlier this season by Newcastle United whilst finishing top of their UEFA Champions League group.

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52-year-old Pep Guardiola is widely considered to be the best coach currently working, having overseen trophy-laden spells at Barcelona and Bayern Munich before joining Manchester City in 2016. A defensive midfielder in his playing days before hanging up his boots in 2006, his coaching career began in the Barcelona academy soon after retirement.

An attacking coach with complex and often cutting edge tactical approaches, Guardiola’s sides have been known to innovate year on year to avoid predictability, tweaking their game plans, formations, personnel and playing patterns to confuse and overwhelm the opposition.

Now in his eighth year of being Manchester City boss, that is longer than his spells at Barcelona and Bayern Munich combined, with the former Spanish international by far the most successful and decorated coach in the history of the club.


It was a fairly routine home win for the Premier League champions in the league in their last fixture before Christmas, with Sheffield United seen off 2-0 at the Etihad Stadium thanks to goals from Rodri and Álvarez in each half.

Both goals were assisted by Phil Foden, who has been flourishing in the middle of the attack in a traditional number 10 role in the absence of Kevin De Bruyne, who is now making his comeback from a longer term injury.

Dominating the fixture, City enjoyed 81% of the ball with 18 shots on goal and 12 corners, but only converted that into four shots on target, which is unlike them.

Previous Starting XI: Ederson; Walker, Akanji, Aké, Gvardiol; Kovacic, Rodri; Bernado Silva, Foden, Grealish; Álvarez (4-2-3-1)


Guardiola has had City lined-up in a 4-2-3-1 for the majority of the campaign, but has on occasion switched to a 3-4-2-1, which is a variation of the same system with a different focus on the width.

Using their full-backs to tuck inside as auxiliary midfielders as a way to pull opposition sides out of position and make space further forward, their ability to frustrate and keep the ball for long periods whilst progressing up the field is the key to their danger.

With attacking midfielders able to get beyond their single forward - who is usually Haaland or Álvarez - it’s a dynamic way to play that usually creates overloads in attacking areas as they look hit the byline and create open scoring opportunities.


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Stefan Ortega

Signed from Arminia Bielefeld in Germany in the summer of 2022, 31-year-old goalkeeper Ortega has played 19 times since arriving in Manchester, with the majority of his appearances coming in cup competitions.

His first club outside of Germany, the goalkeeper is the first deputy for Ederson, with Scott Carson also within the group. Likely to be one of Guardiola’s planned changes, Ortega played six times in the Emirates FA Cup in the 2022/23 campaign.

Kevin De Bruyne

Seriously injuring his hamstring inside half an hour of the Premier League kicking off this season, De Bruyne has been missing since August for City, but was named on their bench against Sheffield United last time out, despite not making it onto the field.

Having been in Manchester since January 2015, he is approaching a decade of service at the Etihad and is expected to make a long awaited comeback against Town this weekend. One of the most influential midfielders in recent times, the 32-year-old Belgian still has plenty of top level football within him.

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Erling Haaland

23-year-old Norwegian striker Haaland has worked his way up since beginning his career with Molde, with two seasons at Red Bull Salzburg earning him a move to Borussia Dortmund, where his career really began to have a spotlight shone on it.

After scoring 86 times in 89 appearances for Dortmund, the forward earned a big money move to City last summer, helping to inspire the all-conquering treble campaign with a record number of goals in one season for the club. Now on 71 goals in 75 games in England, Haaland has been missing since the start of October, but is slated for comeback against Town in the cup.

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Town Manager Darren Moore will be speaking to the media from the Millers Oils High Performance Complex on Friday 5 January 2024, with the press conference once again due to be streamed live on both HTTV via YouTube and our official Twitter/X channel, @htafc.

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With the home side in sky blue, the Terriers will be in their all-black Third Kit at the Etihad Stadium this Sunday.

Supporters with a match ticket can get themselves 15% off the strip - and all other eligible items - between 9.30am and 11.30am on match day in our Club Shop; CLICK HERE to find out more!

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Should the tie end in a draw, a replay will be required to decide a winner which will see the sides come back to the John Smith’s Stadium.

If the replay were to once again be drawn at the end of 90 minutes, extra time and penalties will be played until a winner is decided.

Similarly to the Sky Bet Championship, each side will have nine substitutes to choose from, with five of those able to come on across three opportunities, which does not include half-time.


Thanks to your incredible support, our allocation of 6,103 tickets for this tie have completely sold out!

As an all-ticket fixture, there is no capacity for pay on the day and Terriers without a valid match ticket should not make the journey to the Etihad Stadium.

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Supporters who already hold an iFollow audio season or half season will be able to listen along as usual, however, individual audio match passes will not be available.

As this is an Emirates FA Cup tie, match streaming will not be available, even outside of the traditional Saturday 3pm blackout window.

CLICK HERE to find out more about iFollow.


Selected for exclusive broadcast by the BBC, the match will be available to watch live on iPlayer online, via their app on all platforms and through the red button!

If you’re not coming to the Etihad with us and are within the UK, this is the only other way to watch the match live.

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