Writer: Johnny Baguette
Date:Tuesday January 14 2014
The Etihad Stadium
Victorious but bloodied from the Tyneside alamo, City now face The Rovers Return in an FA Cup Third Round Replay...
'I'm absolutely sure we have to have a very good game if we want to win, Blackburn are a very good team and very motivated. They didn't surprise me, I think that they played a very good match at home. They know exactly the way they want to play, so we must be very attentive tomorrow in defending and in counter attacks, for different set pieces and try to score a goal against a defence that will be very close.'
'For us it is about learning about our players in these games; no one expects us to win so we can go there and see what our lads are made of. We have got everything to gain. No one outside of our dressing room gives us a prayer and they are situations we quite like...our players and they're really going to be tested on Wednesday…they are excited about the opportunity to play against them again.'
Training hard, El Kun is hotly tipped to feature in some capacity against Blackburn ahead of Saturday's important league clash with Cardiff City. As a starter or a substitute, The Mighty Atom will be hungry to add to his stunning tally of 66 goals in 108 appearances for The Citizens. A crucial return for our ambitions.
Blackburn are at full strength.
The strong likelihood is that City will aim to get this fixture dealt with rapidly and will attack Blackburn from the off. In which case, the 34 year old former England international goalkeeper will be expected to draw on his experience to repel The Blues. Having been out of football for over a year due to a blood clot on his lung, Robbo has already served up reminders of his talent against City and Doncaster in the past week.
THE NUMBERS GAME:
Rovers won their first FA Cup 130 years ago in 1884, beating Scottish side Queen's Park 2-1. They last won it for a 6th time in 1928.
City first won the trophy 100 years ago in 1904, beating Bolton Wanderers 1-0. The Blues last won it for a 5th time in 2011.
HEAD TO HEAD
League: 45 Rovers Wins, 27 Draws, 40 City Wins
FA Cup: 3 Rovers Wins, 2 Draws, 3 City Wins
League Cup: 1 Rovers Win
Total: 49 Rovers Wins, 29 Draws, 43 City Wins
THIS COULD BE THE LAST TIME:
Sa 04Jan 2013 Blackburn 1 - 1 Man City FAC3
Sa 25Feb 2012 Man City 3 - 0 Blackburn PL
Sa 01Oct 2011 Blackburn 0 - 4 Man City PL
Mo 25Apr 2011 Blackburn 0 - 1 Man City PL
Betting: City 1/8 Draw 9 Blackburn 25 Racing Post Soccerbase
FORM LAST 6 GAMES ALL COMPETITIONS:
CLICK HERE TO MAKE YOUR PREDICTIONS AND FOLLOW THE GAME LIVE IN THE VMC FORUM
TV COVERAGE: ITV
mcfcofficial: Pellegrini Blackburn press conference
Striker John Guidetti has joined Leslie Hughes at Stoke City on loan until the end of this season.
Craig Pawson from South Yorkshire Has never refereed a Manchester City fixture but has been in charge of Blackburn matches on 3 occasions, most recently their 1-0 win over Leeds. Officiated 1 Premier League fixture last season and 4 so far this season. -2012/13: 36 Games, 103 Yellows, 4 Reds -2013/2014: 14 Games, 55 Yellows, 3 Reds.
Johnny On The Spot: Once bitten...As it did at Ewood Park 11 days ago, the outcome of this football match much will depend upon Manuel Pellegrini's starting XI. The City squad reassembled after the battle of St James' Park in high spirits but carrying numerous knocks and knowing that Gary Bowyer's young Blackburn side will not go meekly into the night for this one having already struggled to contain their vim and vigour. Still, everybody wants a piece of the action at City right now and The Engineer will most certainly make good again his intention to have every side he selects playing in the same way. As ever it does for any visitors at Fortress Etihad these days, an early City goal could spell curtains for Rovers and the intention has to be to get this tie done and dusted as quickly as possible before ex rag Solskjaer comes to town on Saturday. The opening 15 minutes will be crucial and I expect City to deliver once more. Much as Rovers enthusiasm and energy is admirable, I believe it can only take a team so far. City 4 Blackburn 0
all times East Manchester GMT
Sa 18Jan 15h00 Cardiff City, The Etihad, PL
Tu 21Jan 19h45 West Ham United, Upton Park, LCSF2
Sa/Su 25/26 Jan TBC Watford or Bristol City, The Etihad, FAC4
We 29Jan 19h45 Tottenham Hotspur, White Hart Lane, PL
Mo 03Feb 2014 20h00 Chelsea, The Etihad, PL
Sa 08Feb 15h00 Norwich City, Carrow Road, PL
We 12Feb 19h45 Sunderland, The Etihad, PL
Tu 18Feb 19h45 FC Barcelona, CL
Sa 22Feb 15h00 Stoke City, The Etihad PL
Sa 01Mar 15h00 The Stretfords, the swamp, PL
Date:Tuesday January 14 2014
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