Laporte returned to training this week after injuring his hamstring in the Carabao Cup final on February 24, while Stones and De Bruyne were forced off last weekend at Bournemouth
Man City Injuries
Pep Guardiola had said Laporte would be out until the end of March, but Goal understands the Frenchman's initial diagnosis was only two weeks on the sidelines.
Guardiola may choose not to risk any of the
Fernandinho remains out and Benjamin Mendy is doubtful, having not featured in the squad for the Bournemouth game.
Man City Suspensions
Man City Potential Starting Line-Up
Danilo could come in for Kyle Walker at right-back, although either could feature. Oleksandr Zinchenko has become the stand-out candidate at left-back and if Laporte and Stones are not risked then Vincent Kompany and Nicolas Otamendi are primed to fill in.
Ilkay Gundogan is most likely to deputise for the injured Fernandinho, having done so admirably in the past two matches in particular. Bernardo Silva can step in for De Bruyne, meaning Leroy Sane could come back into the forward line.
Guardiola intimated that Gabriel Jesus was ready to start last weekend in light of Sergio Aguero's fatigue, but the Argentine played anyway and after a few days off at the start of this week he could well make the line-up yet again.
WATFORD TEAM NEWS
Javi Gracia does not have any fresh injury concerns following the victory over Leicester City last weekend
OPTA MATCH FACTS
- Man City
havenever lost a Premier League game against Watford (W7 D2), winning the last seven in a row by an aggregate score of 22-3.
- In all competitions, Watford
havelost their last nine meetings with Manchester City. They’ve only ever lost more consecutively against an opponent vs Man Utd (11 between 1987 and 2016).
havelost 10 of their 11 away league matches against the reigning top-flight champions, drawing the other in December 2015 against Chelsea.
- Man City have won 42 of the 45 points available to them in home games this season (W14 D0 L1), losing only against Crystal Palace in December.
- Man City striker Sergio Aguero has scored 10 goals in six appearances against Watford in all competitions, including netting two hat-tricks against the Hornets.
- Sergio Aguero has scored 96 Premier League goals for Man City at the Etihad. One more will see him level Alan Shearer in third for most goals at a specific venue in the competition (97 at St James’ Park). Only Thierry Henry (114 at Highbury) and Wayne Rooney (101 at Old Trafford) have scored more
. TV COVERAGE & KICK-OFF TIME
Kick off is 17:30 GMT (12:30 ET) on Saturday, and will be shown on BT Sport 1 in the United Kingdom. It will be shown on NBC in the United States, and on various channels around the world.