Mark Hughes has warned his old rival Arsene Wenger there is little he can do to prevent former Arsenal striker Emmanuel Adebayor influencing the outcome of tomorrow's key clash.
The Togolese hit man has scored in all three of City's Premier League games so far and is relishing the chance to shine in the Blues' first tilt this season at a "top four" club.
Emirates manager Wenger has admitted that his old boy is on fire, and City boss Hughes - an avowed aficionado of his adversary's style - expects Adeybayor to ignite the game.
He said: "Whatever you do as an opposition manager, it's very difficult when you have a player such as Manu who is on top of his form. It's very difficult to stop him having an impact or being effective for 90 minutes of a Premier League game.
At some point you would expect him to have a positive impact, either in terms of what he can do himself or to enable his team-mates to be successful
"He has a huge physical presence and and a huge amount of technical ability - bring all that together with a guy that's full of confidence as well and that's a difficult package for opposing teams to deal with."
Adebayor left Arsenal after an out-of-sorts season with his temperament being questioned, and he expects some stick from Arsenal fans in a sold-out City of Manchester Stadium.
Hughes added: "Things have been said about his demeanour at Arsenal in the last year. I have to say I've not seen anything of that since he's been here.
"He comes into training every day and wants to work, wants to get better. He enjoys the company of his team-mates. He's playing with a huge smile on his face - and scoring goals."
Robinho could yet be ruled out alongside Carlos Tevez. Hughes has ordered a re-scan on the Brazil star's ankle injury. He said: "We're going to make sure there is nothing significant there like a stress fracture. Then we can make decision on his involvement."