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Explained: Why IIkay Gundogan Captains Manchester City vs West Ham

Harry Winters

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Explained: Why IIkay Gundogan Captains Manchester City vs West Ham

Featured Image Credit: News Images/Alamy

Ilkay Gundogan will captain Manchester City at West Ham on Sunday.

The Premier League Champions begin their title defence away to the Hammers on Sunday afternoon.

City stuttered to a 2-2 draw at the London Stadium back in May, as an own goal and a strike from Jack Grealish helped the Sky Blues come from 2-0 down in East London.

Pep Guardiola's side lost on the opening day of the campaign last season, and will be looking to make early gains on both Liverpool and Manchester United - who both dropped points on the opening weekend.

After suffering a 3-1 loss to Liverpool in the FA Community Shield last Saturday, City will be hoping for a more promising result on Sunday, after a positive pre-season trip to the USA.

Erling Haaland and Jack Grealish
Erling Haaland and Jack Grealish

The Blues beat both Club America and Bayern Munich during a pre-season tour of the United States last month.

Manchester City have recruited four new players so far this summer, with Erling Haaland, Julian Alvarez, Kalvin Phillips and Stefan Ortega completing moves to East Manchester.

Erling Haaland, Stefan Ortega, and Julian Alvarez meet Manchester City fans. Sportimage / Alamy
Erling Haaland, Stefan Ortega, and Julian Alvarez meet Manchester City fans. Sportimage / Alamy

Haaland, who moved for £51 million from Borussia Dortmund in a blockbuster summer transfer, will make his Premier League debut on Sunday.

Guardiola named the 22 year-old in the City starting side, with Phil Foden and Jack Grealish either side of the Norwegian forward.

Ilkay Gundogan, the Blues' hero from the final day of the last campaign will captain City in the capital this weekend.

The 31 year-old, who is making his 190th start for the Sky Blues on Sunday, captains the Blues following Fernandinho's departure from the club in the summer.

Fernandinho ended a nine-year stay at the Etihad Stadium this summer, leaving the Champions for Athletico Paranaense.

Fernandinho was club captain in his final season at Manchester City ( Sharon Dobson / Alamy)
Fernandinho was club captain in his final season at Manchester City ( Sharon Dobson / Alamy)

Pep Guardiola confirmed that the Blues were yet to elect a new club captain.

Speaking ahead of the FA Community Shield, the 51 year-old said: "We still have not made the decision - I think they will next week."

Simon Bajkowski reported ahead of kick-off on Sunday that because of this, Gundogan will wear the armband against Hammers.

The German was number two at the Etihad Stadium last season.

Alongside the 31 year-old, who is entering the final 12 months of his current contract, Kevin De Bruyne and Ruben Dias have also been tipped as possible successors.


Topics: Manchester City, Premier League, Ilkay Gundogan

Harry Winters
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