Aguero nearing Manchester City return & Balotelli eyeing Stoke start

The Italian forward should make it into the Premier League champions' squad to face the Potters on Saturday but will not be joined by his Argentine strike partner
Sergio Aguero is nearing a return for Manchester City after the striker resumed training earlier this week, while Mario Balotelli will be fit to face Stoke on Saturday.

The diminutive Argentina international injured his knee in City’s victory over Southampton last month, while Balotelli had been suffering with sight problems after picking up conjunctivitis.

Aguero, City’s top scorer, was expecting to make a return in the middle of September but, whilst Roberto Mancini has expressed delight at his progress, he admits the 24-year-old is unlikely to feature against the Potters this weekend.

4/1 Carlos Tevez is 4/1 to score the first goal when Manchester City play Stoke with bet365
"We try this morning with Sergio and after training we decide,” the Italian told reporters. “He is getting better - maybe."

Enigmatic striker Balotelli, meanwhile, had been having difficulty wearing contact lenses and has undergone eye surgery, but Mancini reported that the 22-year-old is back to full health.

He said: "Mario is okay - Mario now sees everything."

The 47-year-old has no fresh injury concerns ahead of City’s trip to Stoke, and could look to feature some of his new signings after a two-week break for international fixtures.

"We don't have any players with [new] injuries, we are all okay,” he added. "Always is the wrong time for the international break but we have a lot of players."