Man City v Fulham Betting Odds

as any forward will tell you, goals breed confidence, and his [Dzeko] all-round performances look to be improving week on week.

Mark Hughes returns to Eastlands for the first time since being sacked as Manchester City manager, looking to put a serious dent in his former employers' top four aspirations.

After a slow start to life as Fulham manager Hughes now seems to have his side playing in an organised and structured manner. The Cottagers have rediscovered that hard-to-beat mentality that was their forte under Roy Hodgson and are beginning to look up the table rather than down.

Manchester City meanwhile have their sights set on a top-four finish. With the league title now seemingly out of their grasp realistic ambitions centre around making sure that they are playing Champions League football next season.

Manager Roberto Mancini opted for a three-pronged attack against Aris Salonika in midweek but has warned fans not to expect the trio to start alongside each other in every game. Reading between the lines suggests that Mario Balotelli could drop to the bench this weekend with Carlos Tevez certain to start and Edin Dzeko likely to be offered the opportunity to continue his recent run of goals.

Vincent Kompany is rated doubtful and Micah Richards, James Milner and Nigel de Jong are all out.

Bobby Zamora's hopes of a return are in doubt after the striker injured his ankle in training while Steve Sidwell, Philippe Senderos and Diomansy Kamara are all definitely unavailable for the visitors.

Back to basics at the back

Success in the FA Cup and Europa League has been a welcome distraction for the Citizens of late. Thursday's 3-0 win over Aris followed a slightly flattering 5-0 victory over Notts County last weekend, yet they've picked up just four points from their last four Premier League games.

But the signs have been positive for City. Despite defeat in the Manchester derby they more than matched the league leaders in most areas and deserved at least a point from the game.

They've also tightened up at the back following Mancini's public dressing down of his side's defensive qualities. Wayne Rooney's wonder strike and Nani's equally well worked goal are the only times that City's defence has been breached in their last five games in all competitions.

Fulham have lost just one of their last seven league games but have also failed to score in their last two fixtures. Chances are likely to be few and far between at Eastlands and unless Zamora can hit the ground running it may not be a happy return for Hughes.

City are quoted at betting odds of 8/15 to take all three points with the draw priced at 3/1 and a Fulham win at a generally available 13/2.

Dzeko is Edin in the right direction

We are often told that adapting to the Premier League style of play and pace can take a bit of time for incoming foreigners. Some are fortunate enough to be afforded the luxury of time while others are expected to adapt immediately.

Up until recently Dzeko had showed very little to intimate that Mancini was correct to splash nearly £30million to bring him to the club. However, three goals in his last two starts suggest that he is beginning to acclimatise.

The critics will note that those goals came against oppositions of perhaps a lesser quality than what he is presented with on a weekly basis in the Premier League. And they would certainly have a point. But, as any forward will tell you, goals breed confidence, and his all-round performances look to be improving week on week.

The Bosnian can be backed at 6/5 to net anytime in the game this weekend and 4/1 to get the first goal of the game.

At the beginning of the season City's ambition was to finish in the top four, and the manager has insisted throughout the campaign that that is how they have remained. A win here would keep them well on course to achieve those goals.

Written By:- Ben Gledhill (About our Authors)
Posted on:- 25/02/2011 - 17:10 PM
Filed in:- Premier League Betting News, Southampton, Manchester City

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