Zabaleta to return for Stoke clash

The Argentina international was forced to leave the field during his side's win over Fulham on Saturday but will return in time to face Stoke in the FA Cup this weekend
Manchester City have been boosted by the news that full-back Pablo Zabaleta will be fit in time for Saturday's FA Cup fourth round clash with Stoke.

The Argentine limped off an hour into his side's 2-0 win over Fulham at the weekend after coming off second best from a crunching tackle.

However, the defender has now confirmed that he will be available for the upcoming meeting with the Potters.

"I took a kick on the top of my foot which caused me a lot of pain afterwards and that's the reason it was better that I came off," he told the club's official website.

"Thankfully, the scan showed there was no serious damage. I should be fine for Saturday but it will be a couple of days before it is 100% again.

"I did some bike work on Monday morning and on Tuesday I will try some running so I'm sure I will be available for the game against Stoke."

The former Espanyol right-back received a rapturous ovation as he left the field injured, and thanked the club's fans for their support.

"It was a brilliant ovation as I came off from a fantastic set of fans," he said.

"I'd like to thank them for that and say that it means so much that people recognise and appreciate that you're giving 100% for the club and that's what I will always do for City."