Manchester City vs Stoke City
Saturday 30th August, Etihad Stadium
Kick off 15:00
Referee: Lee Mason
Next up at the Etihad Stadium are Stoke City, Stoke lost their first game and could only manage a draw in their second game despite playing against ten men for 75 minutes, it is quite easy to suggest that it is doubtful that they will pose much of a threat to us.
It is never my intention to disrespect any of our opponents but I don't see what Stoke can bring to the game that will cause us any problems.
In their first home game of the season they were beaten by Aston Villa, a team that are more or less on par with Stoke, they didn't really cause Villa any problems and lost the game with a whimper.
In their second game of the season they could only manage a draw against a Hull side playing with ten men for most of the game, now I didn't manage to watch as much of this game as I would have liked so I wont say to much but the basic facts involved don't make good reading.
The good thing about Stoke these days is that they aren't as boring to watch as they used to be, they don't just try to defend and hoof anymore, Hughes has them trying to play football a bit more.
There is a couple of decent players in their team that could cause us problems but the main player I think we need to watch is Arnautovic, he always looks a good player when I see him play, he likes to attack and he isn't scared to have a pop.
I also think it is worth keeping an eye on Bardsley if he plays tomorrow, in my opinion Bardsley is under rated, he is good at going forward and can weigh in with a goal, he definitely could be the source of an unsuspected threat.
As for us, we have started the season well enough, 2 games, 6 points, 5 goals, not bad at all but there is much more to come.
We have conjured moments of brilliance in our first two games that have turned into goals, but we haven't played a full 90 minutes of football where we have been consistently good. I know it is only early season and I do believe that we are going to get better and better, we are entering our third game now though and should be fit enough and sharp enough to really turn it on.
As you have probably worked out by now, I expect us to win this game and win it comfortably at that, in fact I expect us to absolutely hammer them.
Man City Team News
Alvaro Negredo is the only definite absentee with a broken foot, Eliaquim Mangala is again expected to miss out due to a lack of fitness.
Stoke City Team News
Victor Moses may not be deemed match fit and is expected to start on the bench, Geoff Cameron is set to miss out with a thigh problem, Bojan Krkic (rib) and Phil Bardsley (knee) were both expected to miss out but some reports now suggest that they may be included in the team.
Possible Man City Line Up
Hart, Zabaleta, Demichelis, Kompany, Kolarov, Nasri, Toure, Fernando, Silva, Jovetic, Dzeko.
Possible Stoke City Line Up
Begovic, Bardsley, Shawcross, Wilson, Pieters, Sidwell, Whelan, Odemwingie, N'Zonzi, Arnautovic, Crouch.
Man City 5 - 0 Stoke City.
Worth A Bet
Fernando scores the first goal in a 5-0 Man City win @ a massive 260/1.