The Manchester Billionaires arrive here on Saturday but, despite their 4-1 win at Fulham last weekend, they should hold no fears for Stoke fans as we can give anyone a run for their money at the Brit.
Certainly, Ryan Shawcross isn’t worried that Man City are in town: ‘We are on a fantastic run ourselves, and we have been playing very well. We look dangerous in attack and we have managed to remain very solid at the back.
He told the official SCFC site: ‘We know what good a team they are though, so we will have to be wary of that. They have world class players in every position; but that aside we have our own strengths too, and that is what we have to focus on.’
Stoke City Team News:
It’s going to be touch and go for Jermaine Pennant after he only survived 10 minutes at The Hawthorns last weekend before coming off with a hamstring strain. Andy Wilkinson is another doubt. Wilko has reclaimed his place in the starting eleven in recent games, but a sore knee could mean that he misses out. Super Sub, Jon Walters should be fit despite suffering groin problems after his two goal heroics last weekend.
Player to watch: Kenwyne Jones
Never underestimate the Trinidadian international as Jones is definitely out of the same mould as his fellow Caribbean strike partner, Ric Fuller. He may seem to be a little ‘slow’ at times but he’s proving more than a handful for opposition defences – whether he’s on the score-sheet or not.
Man City Team News:
Defender Pablo Zabaleta misses the match as he serves a one-match suspension for accumulating five bookings this season.
Player to watch: Carlos Tevez
The one man we do need to worry about, not even considering the fact that he’s the league’s top scorer with nine goals. We were probably fortunate that Tevez missed our run of three unbeaten cup and league matches against the Blues in February when he was given leave to return home to Argentina after his daughter was born prematurely.
Match Facts & Stats
I’ve been wondering this week if it would have been a better idea for the English PL referees to have gone on strike instead of their Scottish counterparts, then we may have got someone who can actually make the correct decisions – this week we welcome back our old friend Peter Walton.
Saturday 4th December: Wigan (away) kick-off: 3pm
Saturday 11th December: Blackpool (home) kick-off: 3pm