Relegation threatened Watford, tackle wounded Citizens

Manchester City will be looking to make a quick response following their FA Cup semi-final exit at the weekend when they take on Watford, who are without a manager, in their penultimate Premier League match on Tuesday.

The Citizens are assured of second place and all focus is now on next month’s Champions League restart, while Watford have plenty to play for as they attempt to avoid the drop.

City’s form in the top flight since last month’s restart has been pretty impressive, winning eight out of 10 matches with an aggregate scoreline of 24-1 in those victories.

The defeats to Chelsea and in particular Southampton, though, plus the two-goal reverse against Arsenal, highlights that the dethroned champions have regressed from last season.

This is a good fixture for City in their bid to quickly hit back, having won 8-0 in September’s reverse fixture – Bernardo Silva helping himself to a hat-trick in that one.

Watford had been far more solid since Nigel Pearson arrived in December as their third manager of the campaign and they are on course to avoid the drop, although they took the decision to part company with the Englishman on Sunday.

After winning back-to-back matches to give themselves some breathing space, the Hornets fell to a 3-1 loss at West Ham United on Friday and still have work to do, perhaps explaining the decision to replace Pearson.

Pearson hit out at his side on the back of that match, in which his side trailed 3-0 inside 36 minutes, but their fate is ultimately in their own hands.

However, with games against City and Arsenal to see out the season, the managerless Hornets may well require a helping hand from elsewhere – unless they can pull off a shock win on Tuesday.

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