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Premier League

  • December 21, 2011
  • • 19:45
  • • Etihad Stadium, Manchester
  • Referee: M. Dean
  • • Attendance: 46321
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Premier League Preview: Manchester City v Stoke City

The leaders have not lost a single game at the Etihad in the Premier League this season, and are on an undefeated run of 18 matches on their own turf in the division


PROBABLE LINEUPS

MANCHESTER CITY

Hart
Zabaleta, Kompany, Lescott, Clichy
Milner, Toure, De Jong, Silva
Dzeko, Aguero

STOKE CITY

Sorensen
Shotton, Woodgate, Huth, Wilson
Pennant, Palacios, Whitehead, Etherington
Walters, Crouch

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini will be without the services of Aleksandar Kolarov as the full-back is sidelined with a groin injury and is not expected to return until the new year.

Micah Richards appeared to have picked up a knock during the recent victory over Arsenal, and Pablo Zabaleta could play at right-back if the Englishman is unable to make a full recovery.

Meanwhile, with games coming in quick succession, Edin Dzeko could be brought back into the starting line-up to keep things fresh.

Stoke City boss Tony Pulis will not be able to pick Ryan Shawcross as the defender is suspended for this game after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season in the win over Wolves. Ryan Shotton should therefore slot in at right-back with Jermaine Pennant taking his place on the right flank. Jonathan Woodgate would then partner Robert Huth in the centre of defence.

Meanwhile, Glenn Whelan and Andy Wilkinson are doubts with calf and knee injuries respectively.

DID YOU KNOW?

  • Manchester City have not lost a single game at the Etihad Stadium in the Premier League this season. They remain undefeated in 18 consecutive home matches in the division.
  • Mancini's men have also scored the most number of goals in the league this campaign, hitting the back of the net 50 times so far.
  • That is 3.125 goals-per-game in the top flight. If they maintain that ratio, City will break Chelsea's record Premier League-era record of 103 goals in a season by getting to a total of 118.
  • In contrast, Stoke City have scored only 18 goals through the course of their league campaign so far. No team has scored fewer than they have in the current top 10.
  • The Potters have won their last four games in the league, and their last two away games. But prior to that, they had won only one league game in 16 matches away from the Britannia Stadium.
  • Stoke have a poor record against Manchester City, winning only two of their last 11 matches in all competitions. This also includes last season's FA Cup final, which Pulis' men lost 1-0 at Wembley.
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Players to watch

David Silva

Position: Midfielder

Games: 10

  • 2
  • 2
  • 0
The midfielder is a danger for any side in the league, and he will look forward to rubbing salt into the wounds of his critics by creating or scoring a goal against a team viewed as one of the more physical sides in the top flight.

The Spaniard leads the assists rankings with eight to his name.

T. Sørensen

Position: Goalkeeper

Games: 0

  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
The veteran goalkeeper will have his work cut out against the Premier League's most prolific side. Shawcross' suspension for this game will make his and Stoke's job even harder.

Editor's Prediction

Mancini's men have recovered from their defeat to Chelsea with a slender 1-0 victory over Arsenal, and will look to get back into the groove by registering a thumping win over the Potters.

Anything less than three points could raise questions as to whether they are running out of steam, but they have the quality to secure a strong win.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Manchester City

Stoke City

Wins
3
1
1
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Manchester City FC MNC
Manchester City FC Manchester City
Draw
Stoke City FC STO
Stoke City FC Stoke City
75%
15%

Top 3 Predictions

Manchester City FC MNC
3 - 0
Stoke City FC STO
Manchester City FC MNC
3 - 1
Stoke City FC STO
Manchester City FC MNC
2 - 0
Stoke City FC STO

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