Gary Rowell: Sunderland’s Man City test has wow factor

Gary Rowell
Gary Rowell
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IT’S Manchester City up next – and what a game is in prospect.

If you can’t get excited for this fixture, you probably need to check your pulse because this is what being in the Premier League is all about.

You have your established giants – the Man Uniteds, Liverpools and Arsenals – but Man City are probably the most interesting club and team around at the moment and boy, do they have some players.

They’re the richest club in the world and haven’t been afraid to spend their cash.

As a result, they’ve got a team of all-stars and could probably field two teams in the Premier League from their squad and both would finish in the top six.

Make sure you check out the City bench on Sunday to give you an idea of their strength in depth.

Talk about the “wow” factor – the three subs who came on in their last outing were Adam Johnson, Edin Dzeko and Gareth Barry, players who would pretty much walk into any other side.

Having said that, they are coming into the game on the back of a draw.

Roy Hodgson did really well at West Brom to get a 0-0 result on Boxing Day because the one thing City aren’t shy of is goals.

That’s the first Premier League game this season City have failed to score in and I’m sure Martin O’Neill will have scrutinised that game for clues on what weaknesses he might look to exploit.

Not that that will be an easy job, given the quality City have.

They’ve got giants in the likes of Yaya Toure and Vincent Kompany, they’ve got defensive quality reinforced by England keeper Joe Hart and up front they’ve got no shortage of options, with the likes of Dzeko, Sergio Aguero and Mario Ballotelli.

It will be a great test for Sunderland, but they’ve gone well at the Stadium of Light since Martin O’Neill arrived and this will be a chance to really try giving the league leaders something to think about in front of a big crowd who will be right behind their team.

Either way, it’s a game to savour.

READ the full column in Thursday’s Echo