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Season 2009/10

Adam Johnson set to return at Stoke

  • 15 February 2010 15:11
  • Posted by David Clayton

Adam Johnson is set to return to the starting line-up for tomorrow night’s trip to Stoke City, but the Blues are likely to be missing at least four key players.

Of the team who began the FA Cup tie with the Potters on Saturday, only Bulgarian winger Martin Petrov is rated as doubtful as the Blues aim to climb into fourth spot in the Premier League ahead of Sunday’s crucial clash with Liverpool.

Carlos TevezCraig Bellamy and Vincent Kompany are still unavailable for the trip to the Britannia Stadium.

“Apart from Martin Petrov, I don’t think we have any new injuries at this stage,” said City boss Roberto Mancini.

“I think this game will come too quickly for Vincent Kompany and we will still be without Carlos Tevez and Craig Bellamy for the Stoke match, but Adam Johnson is available again and I’m sure he will feature in the game.”

Mancini feels his team did enough to progress to the last of the FA Cup at the weekend, but the failure to kill Stoke off in the first half proved costly.

“I think you will see a different game tomorrow night,” he said. “On Saturday we played well in the first half, but we couldn’t find a second goal after taking the lead.

The second half we were so-so, but we didn’t play too badly. We just made the mistake of conceding a throw-in from which they scored

...Roberto Mancini

“I think we handled Stoke’s corners comfortably, but the Rory Delap throw-ins are very dangerous and difficult to defend against and with their pitch being narrower and shorter, we must have more focus and concentration each time they attack in this way.”

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