The former Everton man makes a first start and Roberto Mancini opts for an all-Argentine front pair as the Citizens begin the defence of their Premier League crown
The former Everton man will line up alongside Yaya Toure in the City midfield, in front of the same back five which finished last season.
Carlos Tevez will partner Sergio Aguero in attack as the Premier League champions look to start the defence on their crown with a home win.
Southampton boss Nigel Adkins has surprisingly named last season's top goalscorer Rickie Lambert amongst the substitutes and is replaced by debutant Jay Rodriquez. Former Crystal Palace full-back Nathaniel Clyne also makes a first start for the Saints.
Southampton academy graduate Adam Lallana will captain the side in Lambert's abscence as last season's Championship runners-up hope to cause a major upset on their return to the Premier League.
Manchester City starting XI: Hart; Zabaleta, Kompany, Lescott, Clichy; Y Toure, Rodwell; Silva, Nasri, Tevez; Aguero.
Subs: Pantilimon (GK), Kolarov, Savic, De Jong, Milner, Balotelli, Dzeko.
Southampton XI: Davis; Clyne, Fonte, Hooiveld, Fox; Ward-Prowse, Schneiderlin, Lallana, Puncheon; Guly; Rodriguez.
Subs: Gazzaniga (GK), Lambert, S. Davis, Sharp, Richardson, Shaw, Seaborne