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Stoke u21s v City EDS: Match preview



City EDS go in search of consecutive wins when they take on Stoke City in their penultimate Barclays u21 Premier League clash of the season on Monday.

Attilio Lombardo’s men have plenty of cup engagements to keep them busy until early May after booking their place in the semi-final of the Lancashire Senior Cup with a 2-0 win over Wigan on Friday, as well as their continued involvement with the Manchester Senior Cup.

Last time City met Stoke in the game at Hyde, the Blues ran out 4-1 winners in arguably their most impressive performance of the season so far.

It’s been a testing season for City at this age-group after the sixth place finish in Phase 1 of the league, followed up with a campaign of two halves in Phase 2.

City shot out of the blocks after Christmas, going unbeaten through games against Reading, Bolton, Blackpool and Stoke but their form seemed to dessert them after the heavy defeat at the Madjeski Stadium in March.

It’s now mathematically impossible for City to make the knockout rounds of this, the first season of the new revamped Barclays U21 Premier League but wins against Stoke and Norwich in their two remaining fixtures would secure a respectable finish in National Group 2 for Lombardo's men.

Jose Angel Pozo has been ruled out for the remainder with the ankle injury sustained in the defeat to Newcastle, so there could be an opportunity for Austrian youth international Sinan Bytyqi to stake his claim for regular inclusion in this game unless Lombardo keeps faith with the XI who won at Wigan.

Kick-off at Nantwich Town FC is at 7pm and we’ll have a match report from the game here on mcfc.co.uk after full-time.

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