Manchester City vs Fulham preview: Holders City targeting quarter-final spot
Last Updated: 01/11/18 8:38pm
Carabao Cup holders Manchester City will be looking to book their place in the quarter-finals of the competition when they host Fulham on Thursday.
Pep Guardiola's side are currently top of the Premier League on goal difference - eight ahead of Liverpool's tally in second - and are yet to lose a domestic fixture this season.
They beat Oxford 3-0 in the third round of Carabao Cup, and Oleksandr Zinchenko is hoping the game can give the fringe players a chance to shine.
"Of course, we have a lot of players who didn't play last few weeks, and everyone wants to get the chance to show yourself, show your maximum," he told the club's official website.
"Of course it's going to be a tough game because Fulham play well. They are defensively organised very well, and always against them it is not so easy. We are Man City, that's why for us every competition is so important."
Fulham have the worst defensive record in the top flight, with 15 of the 28 goals they have conceded coming in the last four games and Jokanovic says his team are working on tightening up at the back.
"If you observe the situation, we try to change some things, we didn't find a good answer but we know it's not enough and we aren't doing a good job, we must push forward, adapt ourselves and be more solid," he said.
"We try to find a solution in different ways, we need to be more calm and understand what is the best way for us to play football. We are not satisfied and we can do a better job."
Ilkay Gundogan (hamstring) remains doubtful for City with Danilo (ankle) also likely to be absent, having sustained a knock on international duty. Claudio Bravo (Achilles) is a long-term absentee.
Fabian Delph could be back in contention after a knock while fringe players such as Phil Foden, Brahim Diaz and Zinchenko could be involved. Aro Muric could play in goal.
Fulham will be without suspended midfielder Kevin McDonald, who is serving a one-match ban after being sent off during the weekend defeat to Bournemouth.
Defender Joe Bryan (hamstring) remains unavailable, but 15-year-old midfielder Harvey Elliott, who became the youngest player in the club's history in the third round win at Millwall, will travel with the squad.
City have won their last six matches against Fulham (all in the Premier League), including a 3-0 win earlier this season at the Etihad
The last League Cup meeting between Man City and Fulham was in September 2009 - City won 2-1 at the Etihad in extra-time with goals from Gareth Barry and Kolo Toure
City have failed to score in both of their League Cup fourth round matches under Pep Guardiola, losing 0-1 to Man Utd in 2016/17 and drawing 0-0 with Wolves last season, before going through on penalties
This is Fulham's first League Cup fourth-round match since 2014-15, when they were beaten 5-2 by Derby; they last reached the quarter-finals in 2004/05
Man City and Fulham have met in the League Cup fourth round once previously - the Cottagers won 3-2 in a November 1967 clash
Fulham can't keep a clean sheet no matter who they play so I don't think making changes does them any favours at all. They need to take lessons in how to park the bus sometimes but they really do look incapable of doing so.
Everywhere you look around the Manchester City squad there's quality and Pep Guardiola doesn't know how to take it easy. He demands they win every game and I think they'll do that here quite easily.
CHARLIE PREDICTS: 4-0 (13/2 with Sky Bet)