Copenhagen v Man City preview

19 February 2009 10:25
Manchester City resume their Uefa Cup campaign on Thursday with a trip to FC Copenhagen.

The Blues qualified for the last 32 of the competition after topping Group A, but looked far from convincing in securing their safe passage into the knockout stages.

However, Mark Hughes is keen to make a positive impression in Europe this season and will take a strong side with him to Denmark.

City will have to shake off their travel sickness, though, with the club continuing to struggle on the road.

They have won just one game away from Eastlands in the Premier League this season and were comprehensively beaten 3-1 at Racing Santander in their last Uefa Cup outing.

They did secure an impressive 2-0 win at German side Schalke during the group stages, but performances such as that have been few and far between.

Copenhagen will also be entering the game in confident mood, having progressed from a tough group to reach this stage of the competition for the first time in their history.

The Danes may, however, be hindered by the fact that they are currently in the middle of their close season, with domestic action not set to get under way until next month.

They have played a number of friendlies in recent weeks but their fitness may come under scrutiny on Thursday.

Fresh facesThe hosts are expected to have two new faces in their starting line-up when they take to the field in midweek.

January arrivals Martin Vingaard and Dame N'Doye are in contention to make their competitive debuts, but fellow new signing Johan Wiland is cup-tied having already represented Elfsborg in the Uefa Cup this season.

Brazilian striker Cesar Santin is a major doubt heading into the game, but Swedish defender Peter Larsson has recovered from a niggling knock and could feature.

Duo returnManchester City have both Richard Dunne and Shaun-Wright Phillips available again after suspension ruled them out of domestic action.

Hughes is also hoping that Robinho (thigh) and Micah Richards (ankle) can shake off their respective injuries in time to make the crunch clash.

However, Gelson Fernandes will remain at home to have further treatment on a tight hamstring.

Source: SKY_Sports