Verdict: Stoke City 1 Manchester City 1

A game of two halves saw Roberto Macini’s side grateful to be level at half-time and gutted to be the same at the final whistle. An extra time equaliser for Stoke took the shine off Micah Richards’ brilliant opener which looked to have given us victory at an icy Britannia Stadium.

On reflection a draw was a fair result given our timid first half performance. Tottenham and United may have won at the Britannia this season, but Stoke are now in good form and the icy pitch was more than a leveller – it gave Tony Pulis’ side a distinct advantage.

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Player ratings: Stoke City v Manchester City

Hart – Showed good judgement during a testing first half. Unfazed by Delap’s throws and was confident when coming for the ball. 7

Richards – Very poor in possession during the first half, but made up for it with sublime skill to break the deadlock. Realising the defender would expect him to lay the ball off, then spinning into the vacated space was a piece of attacking play better than anything offered by Balotelli, Silva et al. 7

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Preview: Stoke City v Manchester City

Buoyed by last week’s victory over Fulham, Roberto Mancini will be looking for our third consecutive away victory in a potentially tricky fixture against the Potters. Following an FA Cup defeat and hard fought draw in trips to the Britannia Stadium last season, the City manager will be well aware of the dangers posed by Tony Pulis’ side.

It’s no surprise to hear that Mancini has had the squad working on the defending of set pieces in training this week. With Pablo Zabaleta suspended either Jerome Boateng will resume at right back, or Micah Richards if the German isn’t fully fit.

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Verdict: Fulham 1 Manchester City 4

Roberto Mancini’s band of happy travellers triumphed again as Carlos Tevez inspired a victory over Mark Hughes. The frustrations of two goalless draws at Eastlands were cast aside as the fans were once again singing their praise of the Italian manager.

Mancini reverted to the three man central midfield of de Jong, Barry and Yaya. It wasn’t particularly defensive with the Ivorian playing high up, almost alongside Tevez.

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