Writer: Johnny Baguette
Date:Tuesday October 19 2010
There may be five fixtures yet to play before the Manchester Derby, but the signs are that Mancio's squad options could be strong in three weeks time...
All of a sudden City are looking fitter than rival teams in the last 30 minutes of a game and the win at Blackpool was no exception. It could be that the intensive training regime of The Blues' no nonsense boss is beginning to pay dividends. Even without playing particularly well, the side are able to grind out results with that extra gear.
The latter sentence is a fact of life that Manchester united supporters have relished for years.
The Citizens are a clear second in the Premier League 8 games in without the benefit of Mancini being able to employ all of his 6 summer signings. In fact, the results have been gained with a nucleus of last season's squad plus Joe Hart.
But all that is set to change with the giant Mario Balotelli and uncompromising Aleksander Kolarov set for first team action by the end of this month. Both have progressed slowly from their respective injuries with Mancini again not prepared to rush a player back too early the way that Mark Hughes did with the painkillered likes of Robinho and Vincent Kompany.
There's a scouser just outside the city walls who many rags were waking up screaming about last night. He has repeatedly found himself in recent times desperately pushed back into the front line too early by his manager to the detriment of his international career. A classic example of how not to handle long term injuries through panicked over reliance.
If City can come through the next 3 tough league games and the Euro double header with Lech Poznan relatively unscathed, the dapper City gaffer could have a full deck too choose from when Taggart and what's left of his old school come to town.
Planet Blue is sensing blood right now.
When each of those last minute winners hit the back of the net across 4 derbies last season we witnessed an outpouring of relief from the Stretford fans that the majority of us had never seen before. They begrudgingly accepted that the gap was closing but still clung to that age old arrogance that we'll never match them.
We reminded them that we weren't going to go away anymore and here we are now. Right in their faces every day of the week again.
Should we be welcoming them to Manchester with all our big guns ready to roll out then so much the better.
Latest Team News:
The resurgent Kolo Toure is out of the Europa League clash againt Poznan and the massive clash against Arsenal, both at Eastlands, due to a hamstring pull.
However, Kolo's imposing brother YaYa who has suffered a knee knock is set to be fit to face the out of form Poles on Thursday night.
Head for The VMC Match Day Experience Forum for the build up to Thursday's game and our ever popular Live Match Day Thread!
Date:Tuesday October 19 2010
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