The Blues from Merseyside visit the Blues from Manchester. Will it be sweet success for the Toffees or will City chew them up and spit them out?
City come into this game on the back of a couple of draws against Paris Saint Germain and Fulham, and will be looking to attain a valuable three points on Saturday. Their season has asymtoped recently, and they need the points urgently. Boss Mark Hughes again has a number of injuries to contend with as he searches for the formation and tactics to propel City up the table. In addition to long-term absentees Valeri Bojinov and Martin Petrov, defenders Micah Richards and Javier Garrido, midfielders Gelson Fernandes and Robinho, and striker Danny Sturridge are all doubtful for the match. On the bright side, young English defender Nedum Onuoha is expected to return to the squad after recovering from the injury which has kept him out for about six weeks. Israeli international Tal Ben-Haim will, in all likelihood, continue alongside captain Richard Dunne in the heart of defence, whilst Michael Ball will replace Garrido. This will massively weaken city as Garrido has shown huge improvement in recent weeks whilst Ball is just horrendously awful. It will be interesting to see whether Hughes decides to keep German defensive midfielder Didi Hamann in the side to add more solidity, or whether he will plump for a more attack-minded player.
Will Hamann play or will we see a more attacking option?
Everton lost their previous game against Aston Villa in calamitous fashion, when Villa scored the winner in injury time after a terrible error from the usually reliable Phil Jagielka. They will be hoping to bounce back with three points, and to cement their place in the top half of the table. However, Toffees boss David Moyes has a serious shortage of strikers at his disposal, due to injuries to Yakubu, James Vaughan and Louis Saha. Victor Anichebe, the only other recognised forward on the books, is also doubtful with a back strain.
Vincent Kompany ‘v’ Tim Cahill
Kompany was poor last week against Fulham and will need to improve drastically if he is to contain Australian dynamo Cahill. The Everton midfielder is brilliant in the air, and will be a real handful for the City defence.
Darius Vassell ‘v’ Joleon Lescott
Vassell, despite not being very good, is a regular starter for Hughes, and he will be up against a tough opponent in the shape of Toffee defender Lescott, who has been in sensational goalscoring form recently and could teach Vassell a thing or two about putting the ball in the back of the net.
Lescott – makes Wayne Rooney and Peter Crouch look handsome!!
Benjani ‘v’ Phil Jagielka
Benjani scored a superb goal in the last match away at Fulham, and will be hoping to add to his tally. Jagielka always seems to have a brilliant game against City, but will need to bounce back after his howler last week.
City 2 – 1 Everton
A tight affair with goals scored by Shaun Wright-Phillips, Stephen Ireland, and Tim Cahill.
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