9 Dec

‘Nothing is impossible’ is a famous slogan which Man City might do well to adapt to this match. Devoid of the services of our inspirational captain Carlos Tévez, the Blues are under pressure to record a victory without relying on the goals from the prolific Argentine. It has been, and still is, a criticism launched in our direction that without Tévez, City can’t win. But on the back of successive victories, what better time than now to dismantle that unwanted moniker.

The home side, despite their lowly league position, are more than capable, as Man United would testify, of producing a sparkling performance. In Scott Parker, they possess, in my humble opinion, one of the most underrated players in the league. His no-nonsense spirit, combined with his indubitable tackling ability and eye for a goal, are deserving of a better stage than his current club, so it’s no surprise he has often been linked with bigger and more glamorous teams.

With regards to team selection, my good friend Roberto Mancini, as stated above, lacks the presence of Carlos Tévez, whose booking against Bolton means he has reached the limit of five and is suspended for this match, but Kolo Touré should be fit to start and will replace the Argentine as captain. Pablo Zabaleta can expect to shift to left-back in the absence of Aleksandar Kolarov, who is suspended for this match, whilst Jérome Boateng and Micah Richards are competing for the right-back berth. Further up the field, Adam Johnson, James Milner and Jo are in the running to replace Tévez, with the former ‘Boro man expected to get the nod, with Mario Balotelli moving infield.

Here is the team which Mancini may select:


Boateng                    K. Touré                       Kompany                       Zabaleta

                   Y. Touré                     de Jong                           Barry

Silva                                                                                                           A. Johnson

Subs: Given, Richards, Lescott, Vieira, Milner, Jo, Adebayor

Key Battles

Matthew Upson v Mario Balotelli

The volatile Italian has had an electric start to his City career but was slightly quieter during the win over Bolton last week. He is capable of the extraordinary and is regarded by many at the club as the ‘most natural finisher in the squad.’ If he can harness his temperament, he will be quite a player. Upson is the most experienced of West Ham’s defenders and will need to be at the top of his game if the home side are to escape with any points.

Frédéric Piquionne v Vincent Kompany

The former Portsmouth striker, who followed Avram Grant from the Fratton Park side in the summer, has made a decent start to this campaign and he will be looking to justify the Israeli’s faith by scoring a goal or two on Saturday. Kompany has been outstanding so far this season, with his consistency marking him out as our current player of the year and he will hope to keep up his good form in this fixture.

Prediction: West Ham 02 MAN CITY – Despite the absence of Tévez, I believe the Blues have enough quality to see off the Hammers with ease. Goals to be scored by Mario Balotelli and David Silva.


7 Responses to “West Ham v MAN CITY – THE PREVIEW”

  1. Amman Kallumpram 09/12/2010 at 6:40 pm #

    Good article. I think the key for City is scoring early on in this one, which could lead to a similar performance to the impressive Fulham one. Otherwise, it could be a similar performance to the Bolton match, edgy and nervy 1-0 win. Nothing short of a win should be expected against the bottom team, if City are considering themselves as title contenders. (Before you refer once again to the United result, that was a team with ten changes. A team with Rooney,Vidic and VDS would not lose at Upton Park).

    • JOHN GUIDETTI IS MY HERO!!! 09/12/2010 at 6:58 pm #

      p.s they would lose, don’t lie…

  2. JOHN GUIDETTI IS MY HERO!!! 09/12/2010 at 6:58 pm #

    Lovely article….well, i’ve not actually read it yet but the pictures are good 🙂 I’ll leave a proper comment a tad later on!

  3. rat 09/12/2010 at 9:02 pm #

    that would be the line up I would play as well, but I would not be to dissapionted if Milner started ahead of Johnson. That is the beuty of our squad you are with out the best player in the league (Tevez) and you have quality such as Johnson, Milner, Jo, Santa Cruz to replace him.

  4. Ricky 09/12/2010 at 11:20 pm #

    “Nothing is impossible” – I disagree, not blinking when you sneeze, swallowing and breathing simultaneously. Also, this geography essay that i haven’t done is impossible.

    Ahh, AK, jumping to the defence of Salford Rovers, yet again!!! Whatever you say, it will forever more appear in the record books as a LOSS.

    Genuinely worried about the game – we have lacked so much when Tevez has not played – Balotelli doesn’t entirely fill me with confidence, I really hope Silva is his usual inspirational self.

  5. Clevblue 10/12/2010 at 6:20 am #

    Nice article, thanks. I would like to see a partnersgip develop between Ade and Balo, this game would be an ideal time to pair them up from the start. I’d start with AJ on the bench and bring him on if Ade isn’t working out

  6. JOHN GUIDETTI IS MY HERO!!! 10/12/2010 at 11:13 pm #

    “He is capable of the extraordinary and is regarded by many at the club as the ‘most natural finisher in the squad.’ If he can harness his temperament, he will be quite a player.”

    >>> I really do agree. He has the potential to be world class. Some of his touches and flicks were simply stunning during the Bolton match, however he does seem to go down so very easily which is disappointing to watch for what looks like such a strong player.

    >>> With regards to your team line up, I can see him playing Milner instead of AJ because I still feel he holds a grudge against AJ after his comments and the drinking.

    >>> I think Yaya and Barry will have to be on top of their game but they both come into this game in a rich vein of form I hope they can continue.

    >>> I also hope Jerome gets his chance at RB with Zabaleta at LB becuase despite the big bust up with Balotelli, I think he is the best RB we have

    Enjoyable read and I did point out an error to you in person which no-one else picked up on, so therefore I am the only one to properly read this! Hahaha! Good preview Steven, looking forward to the review 🙂

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