Options Ahead Of Wigan Hinge On Internationals
Roberto Mancini will be preparing to reassemble his City squad in advance of a crucial phase of games hoping for a clean bill of health for our international stars...
News coming out of Carrington this morning is that England's Micah Richards' hamstring injury might not be as bad as originally feared after he left the Three Lions squad to head for treatment. No stranger to hamstring trouble, Micah told th'official site:
'I felt a bit of tightness in the hamstring and it is not something I want to take any chances with. I missed some games last season with a similar problem and thought it best to be as cautious as possible. I have had the injury looked at and I am confident I will be available for the Wigan game at the weekend.'
Micah might well find he's rested as a further precaution with his place not neccessarily going to Pablo Zabaleta who has had to travel to India with Kun Aguero for an exhibition match.
Stefan Savic may start at right back for the visit of Roberto Martinez's side. Further down the pecking order, Nedum Onuoha is another option. Meanwhile, Kolo Toure is now firmly back in the defensive mix.
Aguero is likely to start from the bench against Wigan ahead of City's eagerly anticipated first ever Champions League game against Napoli. It could be that Carlos Tevez, who has been making another nuisance of himself with the hacks will get the nod to partner Edin Dzeko. Okay, just as long as he passes regularly to City's in form line leader and goes nowhere near that Captain's armband...
Another Blue very much in the news, particularly in France is Samir Nasri. French coach Laurent Blanc has repeatedly called for Nasri to improve his performances for Les Bleus but City's multi-talented midfielder found it tough going on Albania's cabbage patch pitch last week alongside French team mates who played like strangers. Yesterday, Olympique Marseille boss Didier Deschamps spoke out in praise of Nasri and lent his support.
Nasri appeared to take a knock on his right foot when shooting on goal in the second half of France's 1-2 win in Tirana and he has been rated as doubtful for tonight's important clash in Romania in the host country's new stadium. That said, Blanc might shake his team up and play Sochaux's tricky creator Marvin Martin in Samir's place. This would suit Mancio as he's eager to increase Nasri's familiarity with his City colleagues.
Back to Micah who revealed again the spirit that's racing through the City squad this season:
'No one wants to miss a minute of the season after the start we have had...There is such competition for places...It is only three games and we are not getting carried away. Our feet are firmly on the ground but we want to keep going. We have played some magical stuff so far.'
all times GMT+1
Sa 10 Sep 15:00 Wigan, The Etihad, PL
We 14 September 19:45 Napoli, The Etihad, CLGS1
*Su 18 Sep 15:00 Fulham, Craven Cottage, PL
We 21 Sep 19:45 Birmingham, The Etihad, LC3
Sa 24 Sep 12:45 Everton, The Etihad, PL
Tu 27 September 19:45 Bayern Munich, Allianz Arena,
* Date Change
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