Albion have the capacity to make Manchester City work hard to retain their Premier League crown.

Whether they can hurt Pep Guardiola's side at the Amex on Sunday could depend on how Solly March and Yves Bissouma perform.

City had to wait until 20 minutes from the end for Sergio Aguero's breakthrough at the beginning of last season.

They pounced much sooner at Wembley last month, after just four minutes through Gabriel Jesus, but that turned out to be the end of the scoring in an FA Cup semi-final much closer than many expected.

Lewis Dunk, whose own goal clinched the points for City at the Amex 21 months ago, and Shane Duffy will be defiant once more.

Duffy especially will also be a threat at set pieces. In open play, Albion's best hopes of making something happen probably rest with March and Bissouma.

March is finishing the season with a flourish. The winger transformed the last home game, the 1-1 draw against Newcastle, after Chris Hughton brought him on at half-time.

The Argus: A lung-bursting run led to the penalty (above), converted by Glenn Murray, which gave Albion their first point away to one of the top six against Arsenal at the Emirates on Sunday.

Hughton said: "He's a good player, Solly. He earned us the penalty, which is brilliant. The next bits are more assists and more goals, particularly goals.

"He's got really good ability. We really like him."

March and Bissouma in midfield were the architects of Albion's response to their early deficit at Arsenal.

The latter's mobility and desire to get forward is not always matched by a defensive discipline and his tendency to turn possession over cheaply on occasions will also be a concern against City.

The 22-year-old Mali international has, nevertheless, along with Brazilian left-back Bernardo made the most impact among the signings added to the squad last summer.

Hughton said: "I think what you saw (at Arsenal) with Bissouma (below), that's how he has been for us, very up and down in his performances.

The Argus: "There's no doubt he is a talent. He is a young player, it's his first season in this division.

"When you speak to him about the tempo and what he's used to, there's a difference.

"The good thing is we have got through this season. We have a really good opportunity pre-season to work with him.

"He is a talented player and for us to improve as a team and club we need talented players."

Although playing away, against a team that could finish 30 points or more behind City, the game at the Emirates will probably be similar to Sunday's in one respect - Albion's share of possession.

It was 29 per cent against Arsenal, 30 in the FA Cup semi-final.

Hughton said: "Certainly we played with the ball at times how you have to away from home, because the pressure can be enoromous when you are having to soak it up.

"Arsenal will say if they had finished better it was a game they could have won comfortably and we have to accept that, but I thought overall we were good.

"Probably a percentage of that was down to a feelgood factor going into the game and a little less pressure."

The only pressure on Sunday will be on City. For Albion, the valve was released the night before the Arsenal game by Crystal Palace's win at Cardiff which ensured they were safe.

Hughton said: "You can't avoid it (pressure). It's the emotions of the game.

"You prepare the team the best you can. You try to take the pressure off. I think what helped us was a Cup run because that was in-between a difficult period, it was never always low (morale).

"It probably shielded it a bit and that is why our league position probably caught everybody a little bit by surprise.

"Also, when you play against the top teams, it was similar away at Liverpool and City when we had some decent periods. Once you have a little bit of joy in the game I think that lifts the confidence, particularly against the top six because you know how difficult that is.

"We've found that particularly against (Manchester) United over the last couple of seasons, but we just need and want that feeling a little bit more."