West Ham v Man City

10 December 2010 12:27
West Ham midfielders Valon Behrami and Mark Noble are still out, so Jonathan Spector again deputises.Jack Collison is back in training a month ahead of schedule, but is a few weeks off a first-team return. [LNB]Manchester City are without top scorer Carlos Tevez and Aleksandar Kolorov, who are both serving one-match bans. [LNB]Kolo Toure is included despite injuring his calf in the first half of City's win over Bolton, and Emmanuel Adebayor is fit again after a calf injury. [LNB][LNB]West Ham[LNB]Injured: Behrami (hip), Da Costa (ankle), Edgar & Kurucz (all knee), Hitzlsperger (thigh), Noble (appendicitis) [LNB]Man City[LNB]Suspended: Kolarov & Tevez (both one match) [LNB]Injured: M Johnson (knee), Nimely (ankle)[LNB] MATCH PREVIEW The last time West Ham were in a Premier League relegation dogfight they had a certain Carlos Tevez to call upon to fire the goals that eventually led them to safety. The talismanic Argentinean is Manchester City property these days but misses out on a return to the club where he's still hailed as a hero; he is serving a one-match ban after picking up a fifth booking of the season last week. [LNB] We need to keep fighting in order to win a title, just like we have been doing. That could then turn into many more trophies. But people need to remain very patient. You don't build a great club overnight Carlos Tevez, Manchester City captain There may have been signs of City disharmony ahead of and during their victory over Bolton last weekend, yet Roberto Mancini's men are unbeaten in the league since October. They have quietly put together a run of results that has seen them close to within three points of top spot. Just six weeks ago, talk of a first league title since 1968 appeared fanciful having slipped eight points off the pace. [LNB]City have enjoyed their trips to London this season. They held Tottenham to a goalless draw at White Hart Lane on the opening day of the season, and thumped Fulham 4-1 at Craven Cottage last month, where they scored all four goals in a dominant first-half display. In total, they are unbeaten in six trips to the capital under Mancini. [LNB]West Ham will be glad to be back to familiar surroundings after last week's defeat at Sunderland. Despite propping up the Premier League table, Avram Grant's side are unbeaten in their last three league fixtures at Upton Park, five in all competitions. Victory over City would give them back-to-back home wins against the two Manchester clubs, following their 4-0 win over United in the League Cup last month. [LNB][LNB] MATCH FACTS Head-to-head[LNB]• West Ham have a fine home league record against Manchester City, winning 24 of 42 all-time meetings at Upton Park. City have left with all three points on only 10 occasions. [LNB]• City's last victory at Upton Park was a 2-0 success on the opening day of the 2007/08 season. One-season wonders Rolando Bianchi and Geovanni supplied the goals that day. [LNB]• The Hammers only win in eight league matches against Manchester City was 1-0 at Upton Park in March 2009. Jack Collison scored the only goal of that game. [LNB][LNB] Are Manchester City back in the title hunt? West Ham[LNB]• West Ham have only ever picked up as few as 12 points from their opening 16 Premier League games once before. That was during the 2002/03 season, when they were ultimately relegated. [LNB]• The Hammers have secured just six league wins during the calendar year of 2010, and claimed a combined total of just 29 points. [LNB]• Robert Green (98) has made more saves than any other keeper in the Premier League this season. [LNB]Man City[LNB]• Only leaders Arsenal have scored more than City's 13 away goals, and picked up more than City's 14 away points this season. [LNB]• Joe Hart has kept eight clean sheets this term, the equal best in the Premier League along with Chelsea's Petr Cech. [LNB]• City have ended the last eight rounds of Premier League fixtures in fourth place. [LNB]• If selected, Joleon Lescott will be making his 350th career league appearance. [LNB][LNB] LEADING GOALSCORERS [LNB]West Ham[LNB]Parker: 6 goals (4 league); Piquionne: 5 goals (4 league) [LNB][LNB]Man City[LNB]Tevez: 10 goals (10 league); Balotelli: 5 goals (2 league) [LNB][LNB] MATCH OFFICIALS Referee: Phil Dowd [LNB]Assistant referees: Mike Mullarkey & Paul Thompson [LNB]Fourth official: Lee Probert [LNB][LNB] LAST LEAGUE MATCH LINE-UPS West Ham (L0-1 v Sunderland, a): Green, Gabbidon, Tomkins, Upson, Ben-Haim (Faubert 83), Dyer (Piquionne 69), Parker, Spector, Boa Morte (Hines 69), Obinna, Cole. Subs Not Used: Stech, Reid, Barrera, Kovac. [LNB]Man City (W1-0 v Bolton, h): Hart, Zabaleta, Toure K (Lescott 31), Kompany, Kolarov, Toure Y, De Jong, Barry, Silva (Richards 84), Tevez (Milner 90), Balotelli. Subs Not Used: Given, A Johnson, Vieira, Jo.

Source: BBC_Sport