Manchester City v Bolton - Preview

  • March 03, 2012 | By Chris Mann
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Bolton face the daunting task of travelling to the Etihad Stadium on Saturday, where they will be looking to end Manchester City's perfect home record.

City have won every single one of their home league games this season and go into the game as huge favourites on an afternoon which could end with Wanderers at the bottom of the table.

Owen Coyle's side have failed to score in any of their last three trips away from the Reebok Stadium and they have won just one of the previous 11 meetings between the two sides.

If they are to end those dismal records, they will have to be at their very best when they make the short journey on Saturday afternoon.

Coyle will be hoping to have Mark Davies available after he sat out the defeat at Chelsea last weekend with a hamstring problem.

Should Davies fail to prove his fitness, Darren Pratley may be given another opportunity to impress in midfield after a poor showing at Stamford Bridge.

Nigel Reo-Coker and Fabrice Muamba look set to start in central midfield, with Ryo Miyaichi and Chris Eagles hoping to hold off competition from Tuncay and former City man Martin Petrov on the flanks.

Adam Bogdan should continue in goal, with a back four of Sam Ricketts, David Wheater, Tim Ream and Gretar Steinsson providing cover. Steinsson picked up a calf injury on international duty in midweek, but is expected to pass a fitness test ahead of the game.

Zat Knight is pushing for a recall but may have to settle for a place on the bench, but there will be no place for Dedryck Boyata who is ineligible to play against his parent club due to the terms of his loan deal.

Kevin Davies remains doubtful with a knee injury, so David Ngog should continue in the lone striker position ahead of Ivan Klasnic and Marvin Sordell, who has yet to start a game for the Trotters since his January move from Watford.

City boss Roberto Mancini looks set to have a near full strength squad available for the visit of Bolton.

Carlos Tevez is thought to be close to a return after settling his dispute with Mancini, but the game with Wanderers may come too soon for the Argentina international, who continues to work on his fitness.

Yaya Toure picked up a knock on international duty in midweek, but he is expected to start in a midfield containing Nigel de Jong, Adam Johnson and David Silva.

Sergio Aguero and Mario Balotelli should start in attack, while Joe Hart will be protected by a back-four of Micah Richards, Joleon Lescott, Vincent Kompany and Aleksandar Kolarov.

Should City record a victory over their near neighbours, they will become the first team since Newcastle United, in 1907, to win their first 14 home league games of the season.

Bolton Wanderers: from: Bogdan, Jaaskelainen, Lynch, Steinsson, Robinson, Knight, Ricketts, Wheater, Ream, Riley, Muamba, Eagles, Petrov, M Davies, Reo-Coker, Pratley, Miyaichi, Vela, Blakeman, Tuncay, Klasnic, Blake, Ngog, Sordell, Eaves, Obadeyi, O'Halloran

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
14 Charlton Athletic 21 26
15 Cambridge United 21 26
16 Bolton Wanderers 21 26
17 AFC Wimbledon 19 24
18 Lincoln City 20 21
View Full Standings >>


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