Manchester City manager Stuart Pearce has hinted that teenage striker Daniel Sturridge could start the FA Cup fifth round clash against Preston North End.
There are fears that Darius Vassell will miss the match because of injury, so 17-year-old Sturridge could add to his one substitute appearance for the club - against Reading earlier this month.
Pearce told City's official website: "If Vass fails to make it then it might nudge Studge closer to the sixteen or even the starting line-up.
"The one thing that he knows is that there's not an awful lot of traffic in front of him and he might get his chance.
"He came to Portsmouth with the squad and I told him that his aims for the rest of the season should be to travel with us as much as possible, get in as many sixteens and, if fortunate enough, get a start.
"In a sense only Daniel can make that happen by his performances in training and on the pitch.
"Daniel has reacted well to his first taste of Premiership football. I wouldn't say he was cocky, but he's sure of his own ability and that's a great trait to have, especially as a forward."