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First Team News

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Blues look to avoid hex factor!

James Milner Westbrom

James Milner Westbrom

City travel to West Brom tomorrow bidding to lift the jinx that has blighted recent trips to The Hawthorns.

Considering the Blues have been in the ascendency over the past decade, the Baggies have an excellent record against City including five wins out of the last six matches they have hosted.

Roberto Mancini has already tasted defeat to Roberto Di Matteo’s men earlier this season when Albion knocked City out of the Carling Cup, though the Blues fielded a very inexperienced team for that game.

“It will be difficult because West Brom play good football and have started the season very well, but we most go there looking to end a disappointing run,” said Mancini.

“We didn’t deserve to lose in Poznan, but that is football and that is in the past now. We created enough chances, but were unfortunate on the night - I’m sure our luck will return soon.

We go into the game in fourth position in the Premier League and if that is where we finish next May, perhaps having won the FA Cup or the Europa League, too, I think we will have done a fantastic job and enjoyed a great season

...Roberto Mancini

 

Nigel de Jong is set to return but the game could come too soon for skipper Carlos Tevez who won't be risked if there is any doubt over his fitness.

With just two losses against City in the last 11 meetings, Albion could go above the Blues if they win and Pablo Zabaleta is urging his team-mates to forget about playing United next week and concentrate on returning from the Midlands with three points.

"The derby is coming up, but right now the most important match is West Brom," he said.

"We must keep our focus on that, because we really need to win it. Sometimes you lose games but losing three in a row is not good because you lose confidence. Now we have to be positive. We have to be ready for West Brom and then for the derby next week."

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