Manchester City midfielder Fernandinho celebrates a goal against Arsenal, December 14. Reuters
Fulham will be wary of another Manchester City master class when the two sides meet in an English Premier League encounter at Craven Cottage on Saturday.
City are one of the form teams in the EPL at the moment and will be buzzing after that 6-3 thumping of Arsenal at the Etihad, which was followed by a comfortable 3-1 victory over Leicester City in the Capital One Cup quarterfinals.
When on-song there are very few teams that can keep up with Manuel Pellegrini's men, as Arsenal found out last Saturday, and Manuel Pellegrini, whose side can go level on points with Arsenal with three points with the North London side only playing on Monday, against Chelsea, will now target let's-score-as-many-goals-away-from-home-as-well when they visit Fulham.
While City's home record in the Premier League, their away form is not the best, having lost four times in eight matches already in their travels, and Fulham's one hope will be that particular record.
"I think the results of the first games playing away was not what we deserved," Pellegrini said. "It's very important for this team to win away."
"We won the three games in the Champions League playing away, that's important. We won the two games playing away in Capital One also and in the Premier League the last two games we drew and we won, so I hope we will continue in the same way."
Fulham currently find themselves second bottom, desperately needing points to get out of the relegation zone. Pellegrini understands playing teams in great need of a win can be tricky.
"For different reasons, it is always very hard to play all teams in the EPL, but the important thing is the way we play the game," the Chilean added. "Sometimes you play teams at the top of the table, sometimes teams at the bottom.
"But I'm absolutely sure that our mentality must work thinking that we always have a strong team in front of us."
Fulham, who are closing in on a move for former forward Clint Dempsey, were thumped 4-1 at Everton last weekend, but did win their last home game 2-0, beating Aston Villa. Rene Meulensteen, still finding his feet with the club, will want his side to concentrate on that home victory and take confidence from that result when City come to visit.
"The players here are as good as gold," the Dutchman said. "It's a good squad with a lot of experience. The players are aware of the situation we're in and how we can get out of it. They've been very supportive to me and I couldn't ask for anything more.
"The only disappointment in the three games I've been in charge of is that we've only picked up three points when we could have had five or six. Other than that the players have been fantastic. They've started to buy into the way I want to play the game.
"City will be strongly pushing for the title. It's going to be tight with them and Chelsea if you ask me. They're a great club with great players and we have to test ourselves. We'll do our upmost to get something out of it."
Team news: Fulham: Fernando Amorebieta is a doubt while striker Hugo Rodallega is back in training from a groin problem and could be available against City.
Manchester City: Sergio Aguero (calf) remains ruled out with fellow Argentine Pablo Zabaleta (hamstring) joining him on the sidelines, along with Matija Nastasic and Stevan Jovetic. With Micah Richards also sidelined, it leaves City without a right-back leaving Pellegrini plenty to ponder on how to fill that position.
"We don't have a right back, so we will see tomorrow who will play there," Pellegrini said on Friday. "We can play [Gael] Clichy, we can play [Aleksandar] Kolarov, we can play [Dedryck] Boyata or [James] Milner. But we will see tomorrow what is the best option."
Key men: Fulham: The midfield trio of Steve Sidwell, Scott Parker and Giorgos Karagounis will be vital for the home side to stifle the strong City central midfield duo of Yaya Toure and Fernandinho.
Manchester City: Alvaro Negredo's performances have been overshadowed a little bit by Aguero's prowess this season. With the Argentine injured, it will allow the Spaniard to take centre-stage.
Where to Watch Live
The game is scheduled for an 8.30 pm IST start with live coverage on Star Sports HD1. The match can also be live streamed online in India HERE. Viewers in the U.S. can catch the match HERE, while viewers from Australia can live stream the action HERE. To watch the match live online in North Africa and the Middle East click HERE.
Expected lineups: Fulham: Stekelenburg; Riether, Senderos, Hughes, Riise; Sidwell, Karagounis, Parker; Dejagah, Berbatov, Kacaniklic.
Manchester City: Pantilimon; Milner, Kompany, Demichelis, Clichy; Toure, Fernandinho; Silva, Dzeko, Nasri; Negredo.
Prediction: 4-1 to Manchester City
To report problems or to leave feedback about this article, e-mail:
To contact the editor, e-mail: