Premier League Preview: Manchester City - Stoke
The Premier League champion is seven points adrift of league leader Manchester United, but last season's heroics will give the club belief against Tony Pulis' free-scoring side.
By Tom J Doyle
Zabaleta, Kompany, Nastasic, Clichy
Milner, Garcia, Yaya Toure, Silva
Cameron, Huth, Shawcross, Wilkinson
Kightly, Walters, Etherington
Aleksandar Kolarov (groin), Maicon (knee) and Jack Rodwell (hamstring) are all set to miss out again for the home side as they have no set return dates from their respective injuries.
Samir Nasri will begin his ban for the straight red card he received in the 4-3 win away to Norwich, while Micah Richards (knee) is out until at least February.
Mario Balotelli may have recovered from illness in time to make the matchday squad, but it is doubtful the Italian will start the game against the Potters.
Rory Delap (hernia) and Marc Wilson (broken leg) are out for Stoke, while Steven N'Zonzi is serving a ban for his red card against Southampton in the 3-3 Boxing Day draw.
That means that Charlie Adam is likely to partner Glenn Whelan in midfield, while Geoff Cameron could return at right back ahead of Ryan Shotton after serving a suspension for accruing five yellow cards.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- The last two Premier League clashes between the sides have ended 1-1 - however, Manchester City has won the last two league games at the Etihad Stadium 3-0.
- City has only failed to score in three of their 20 Premier League games this season.
- Roberto Mancini's men had a fairly disastrous December, losing three times in all competitions and drawing once, but still won three Premier League games.
- City has kept just one clean sheet in seven games, beating Reading 1-0 at home.
- Edin Dzeko (pictured right) has eight Premier League goals after his double against Norwich, which is one more than both Sergio Aguero and Carlos Tevez having played fewer minutes than the pair.
- Stoke has conceded the fewest goals in the Premier League this season, letting in just 17 in 20 games.
- Stoke has kept clean sheets in its last three away games - against West Brom (1-0), Aston Villa (0-0) and Tottenham (0-0).
- In nine Premier League meetings between the sides, City has never won away at Stoke, and the Potters have never won away at City.
- The Potters are unbeaten in 10 league games, picking up 20 points from a possible 30.
- Conceding three goals against Southampton was the first time Stoke has let in more than one goal since losing 4-2 to Manchester United on October 20.
Top 3 Predictions
Manchester City 3-1 Stoke
- 12.26 %
Manchester City 3-0 Stoke
- 9.89 %
Manchester City 2-0 Stoke
- 9.26 %
|English Premier League (EPL) (EPL)||Feb 22, 2014||Manchester City 1 - Stoke 0|
|English Premier League (EPL) (EPL)||Sep 14, 2013||Stoke 0 - Manchester City 0|
|FA Cup (FA)||Jan 26, 2013||Stoke 0 - Manchester City 1|
|English Premier League (EPL) (EPL)||Jan 1, 2013||Manchester City 3 - Stoke 0|
|English Premier League (EPL) (EPL)||Sep 15, 2012||Stoke 1 - Manchester City 1|
|Apr 21, 2014||Manchester City 3 - West Bromwich 1||EPL|
|Apr 16, 2014||Manchester City 2 - Sunderland 2||EPL|
|Apr 13, 2014||Liverpool 3 - Manchester City 2||EPL|
|Apr 5, 2014||Manchester City 4 - Southampton 1||EPL|
|Mar 29, 2014||Arsenal 1 - Manchester City 1||EPL|
Times In EDT
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed