Mark Lawrenson states his prediction for Man City v Sheffield United

BBC Sport pundit Mark Lawrenson is backing Manchester City to beat Sheffield United at The Etihad on Sunday afternoon

Pep Guardiola
Pep Guardiola (Photo: The Sport Review)

Mark Lawrenson is backing Manchester City to return to winning ways with a resounding 3-0 victory over Sheffield United at The Etihad on Sunday.

The Citizens suffered a surprise 3-2 loss to top-six contenders Wolves at Molineux Stadium on Friday night to leave the defending champions with a lot of ground to make up in the title race.

Manchester City were leading 2-0 thanks to Raheem Sterling’s double despite Ederson’s 12th-minute sending off for a foul on Diogo Jota.

However, Wolves showed their fighting spirit thanks to goals from Adama Traore in the 55th minute to halve the deficit before Raul Jimenez and Matt Doherty netted in the final eight minutes.

Sheffield United are in seventh position and nine points behind Manchester City after Chris Wilder’s side dropped points in a 1-1 draw with 20th-placed Watford on Boxing Day.

The Blades are unbeaten in their last four games following a run of three victories and one stalemate.

Former Liverpool FC defender Lawrenson is backing Manchester City to end Sheffield United’s unbeaten run at The Etihad on Sunday.

“Sheffield United have not been beaten in any of their nine away league games so far, but this is by far and away their toughest assignment to date,” Lawrenson told BBC Sport.

“If City play anywhere near as well as we know they can, they will have too much firepower for the Blades.

“I am not expecting United to make life easy for them, because they will be solid and well organised, and they are a clever side.

“But the teams who have beaten City at Etihad Stadium this season – Wolves and Manchester United – undid them using absolute pace, and Chris Wilder’s side do not have that in their attack.”

Manchester City were bidding to win the Premier League crown for a third successive season.

The Citizens are 14 points adrift of Liverpool FC in the Premier League title race.

Sheffield United are 11 points above the relegation zone.

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