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Free kick awarded for a foul by Gareth Barry on David Ngog. Samuel Ricketts restarts play with the free kick.
Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Adam Johnson from the right by-line, save by Adam Bogdan.
Fabrice Muamba on for Darren Pratley.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on David Ngog by Vincent Kompany. James Milner joins the action as a substitute, replacing Samir Nasri. Free kick taken by Samuel Ricketts.
Samir Nasri takes a shot. Blocked by Tim Ream.
Corner taken left-footed by Adam Johnson from the right by-line, clearance by Zat Knight.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Zat Knight on Edin Dzeko. Direct free kick taken by Gnegneri Toure Yaya.
Effort on goal by Adam Johnson from deep inside the penalty area misses to the right of the goal.
Kolo Toure gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Ryo Miyaichi. Free kick taken by Adam Bogdan.
Mario Balotelli finds the back of the net with a goal from inside the six-yard box to the bottom right corner of the goal. Man City 2-0 Bolton.Assist on the goal came from Adam Johnson.
Samir Nasri gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Samuel Ricketts. Adam Bogdan takes the free kick.
Unfair challenge on Gael Clichy by David Ngog results in a free kick. Gael Clichy takes the direct free kick.
Foul by Darren Pratley on Gnegneri Toure Yaya, free kick awarded. Gnegneri Toure Yaya takes the free kick.
Joleon Lescott gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on David Ngog. Gretar Rafn Steinsson takes the direct free kick.
Edin Dzeko replaces David Pizarro.
Kolo Toure produces a right-footed shot from just outside the penalty box that misses to the left of the target.
Adam Johnson decides to take a short corner.
Darren Pratley gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on David Pizarro. Direct free kick taken by Gareth Barry.
Mario Balotelli fouled by Nigel Reo-Coker, the ref awards a free kick. Gnegneri Toure Yaya takes the direct free kick.
Foul by David Pizarro on David Ngog, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by Samuel Ricketts.
The assistant referee signals for offside against Adam Johnson. Free kick taken by Adam Bogdan.
Unfair challenge on Mario Balotelli by Tim Ream results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Joleon Lescott.
Unfair challenge on David Ngog by Vincent Kompany results in a free kick. Samuel Ricketts restarts play with the free kick.
Gareth Barry produces a left-footed shot from just outside the box that misses to the right of the target.
Outswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Ryo Miyaichi, clearance made by Mario Balotelli.
Mario Balotelli takes a shot. Blocked by Zat Knight.
Gnegneri Toure Yaya has an effort at goal from close range which goes wide right of the target.
Mario Balotelli takes a shot. Save made by Adam Bogdan.
Corner taken by Adam Johnson, clearance by Zat Knight.
Kolo Toure takes a shot. Adam Bogdan makes a save.
Foul by David Pizarro on Nigel Reo-Coker, free kick awarded. Nigel Reo-Coker restarts play with the free kick.
Kolo Toure gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Ryo Miyaichi. Adam Bogdan takes the free kick.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Gael Clichy on Mark Davies. The free kick is swung in right-footed by Ryo Miyaichi.
Corner taken by Ryo Miyaichi from the right by-line, Header from deep inside the penalty area by Darren Pratley goes harmlessly over the crossbar.
Drilled right-footed shot by Ryo Miyaichi. Save made by Joe Hart.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Mark Davies by Gael Clichy. Adam Bogdan takes the free kick.
Shot from 20 yards from Adam Johnson. Blocked by Mario Balotelli.
David Ngog takes a shot. Save made by Joe Hart.
Gnegneri Toure Yaya has an effort at goal from just outside the box which goes wide of the left-hand upright.
Darren Pratley concedes a free kick for a foul on David Pizarro. Mario Balotelli produces a shot on goal direct from the free kick.
Adam Johnson takes a shot. Adam Bogdan makes a save.
Samuel Ricketts takes a shot. Joe Hart makes a save.
Gretar Rafn Steinsson heads into his own net. Man City 1-0 Bolton.
Gael Clichy provided the assist for the goal.
Gael Clichy takes a shot. Blocked by Gretar Rafn Steinsson.
Samir Nasri is caught offside. Adam Bogdan takes the indirect free kick.
Kolo Toure comes on in place of Pablo Zabaleta.
Corner taken by Ryo Miyaichi from the left by-line, Headed effort from inside the area by David Ngog misses to the right of the target.
Nigel Reo-Coker gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on David Pizarro. David Pizarro takes the direct free kick.
Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Adam Johnson, save made by Adam Bogdan.
David Ngog has a drilled shot. Save by Joe Hart.
Mario Balotelli takes a shot. Save by Adam Bogdan.
Corner taken by David Pizarro, David Ngog manages to make a clearance.
Effort from deep inside the area by Mario Balotelli misses to the right of the target.
Effort from 12 yards by Ryo Miyaichi. Joe Hart makes a save.
Inswinging corner taken by David Pizarro.
Mario Balotelli produces a right-footed shot from deep inside the penalty box which goes wide of the left-hand post.
Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Ryo Miyaichi from the left by-line, save made by Joe Hart.
Vincent Kompany challenges David Ngog unfairly and gives away a free kick. The free kick is delivered right-footed by Samuel Ricketts from left channel, clearance by Vincent Kompany.
Samir Nasri takes a shot. Adam Bogdan makes a save.
Shot by Mario Balotelli from deep inside the area hits the post.
Gael Clichy gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Mark Davies. Gretar Rafn Steinsson takes the direct free kick.
Mancini seeks strong finish from Balotelli
Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini hopes his side reap the benefits from Mario Balotelli's controversial axing by Italy this week.
Italy coach Cesare Prandelli left the maverick striker out of his squad for the midweek international friendly against the United States - a decision which attracted criticism after the game ended in defeat for the Azzurri.
Prandelli publicly cited Balotelli's indiscipline as the reason for his omission and earned a rebuke from the player's agent as a result.
Yet with Balotelli having only returned to Barclays Premier League action after a four-match domestic ban for stamping on Tottenham's Scott Parker last week, Mancini has also recently reminded the 21-year-old of his responsibilities.
He now hopes Prandelli's remarks reinforce his own as City look to claim their first league title since 1968.
Mancini said: "We hope that after Tottenham he can now play all the games until the end without problem.
"I think every year he can improve because he is young but, with Mario, in every moment anything can happen.
"But I hope after this week, when he didn't play for the national team, this can put him in a good way for the last two months.
"He should understand when you play you should have concentration about the game, about your team-mates, the ball, movement - not other things. He needs to improve this."
Prandelli pointed out that Balotelli has been sent off twice for City this season and missed eight games through suspension, although three of those were a European ban hanging over from last year.
Even though Balotelli impressed last weekend with a determined, disciplined and goalscoring display in the 3-0 win over Blackburn, Mancini does not have a problem with the issue being raised again.
Mancini said: "I think it is correct. We know that Mario is a top player but he should improve his behaviour.
"For the national team it is important. When you go to play in the European Championship and you only play three or five games, you should have good behaviour."
Mancini, however, is in no doubt who Prandelli should be looking at to lead his line at Euro 2012 this summer.
"Mario is the best Italian striker, for sure - 100%," he said.
Balotelli will again compete for a starting spot with Sergio Aguero and Edin Dzeko - who also both scored against Blackburn - to face Bolton at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday.
The other City striker to have made headlines this week is Carlos Tevez, who had a run-out with the reserves on Tuesday.
The Argentinian is back in training following the closure of his dispute with the club but is still short of match fitness.
Bolton manager Owen Coyle claims Manchester City and their formidable home record will not faze his struggling team.
Coyle not only remains confident his side can beat relegation but feels they are capable of springing a surprise against the leaders.
City have won all 13 of their home league matches this season and 18 in succession stretching back a whole year.
Bolton remain in the bottom three after a 3-0 defeat at Chelsea last week but that result - an 18th defeat of the campaign - has not dulled Coyle's optimism.
Coyle said: "We go into every match thinking we can win. We were terrific against Manchester City earlier in the season when we lost 3-2. We showed we were a threat.
"We will go there looking to be positive. We recognise the quality they have - they have won every home game in the last year and are an outstanding side.
"If you spend #350million you can build a team like that but it won't stop us going there to be positive.
"It will be difficult but all 11 of our players will be focused.
"We are not going to say we can compete with elite clubs over 38 games in the league but, on any given day, we absolutely can.
"Who's to say Saturday won't be our day? The lads are always confident."
Midfielder Mark Davies (hamstring) is hoping to prove his fitness, veteran striker Kevin Davies (knee) is again doubtful while Iceland defender Gretar Steinsson (calf) will be assessed after suffering a knock on international duty.
On-loan Dedryck Boyata is ineligible to play against his parent club but fellow defender Joe Riley (foot) is back in contention.
Profligate Balotelli stars in win
Mario Balotelli took centre stage as Manchester City saw off Bolton 2-0 to move five points clear at the top of the Barclays Premier League.
The mercurial Italian, again in the headlines for non-footballing reasons this morning, spurned a hatful of chances but eventually got on the scoresheet in another commanding City display at the Etihad Stadium.
Balotelli might have had a hat-trick before City took the lead with a Gretar Steinsson own goal in the 23rd minute but made sure of victory in the 69th minute.
City's win was a record-equalling 19th in succession at home in the Premier League and it left Bolton deep in relegation trouble.
There were suggestions Balotelli might have been dropped following reports he had been on a night out in Liverpool in breach of a club curfew into the early hours of yesterday.
Roberto Mancini not only retained him in his starting line-up but deployed him as a lone striker while Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko and David Silva were left on the bench.
Balotelli responded with a display of pace and vigour that might have yielded several goals before he finally struck.
Bolton had attempted to curb City by fielding a defensive side, bringing in an extra centre-back in Zat Knight and pushing Tim Ream forward in a 4-1-4-1 formation.
Yet they were in trouble right from the start as City went straight on the offensive.
Samir Nasri had a great chance with just a minute gone as Pablo Zabaleta pulled the ball back but the Frenchman did not shoot first time and David Wheater blocked.
Balotelli was also quickly in the action and went even closer as he struck the post from a tight angle from a Yaya Toure pass just a minute later.
Nasri pounced on the rebound but Adam Bogdan recovered to make a fine reaction save and Steinsson cleared.
Balotelli had another great chance soon after as Adam Johnson combined with Zabaleta on the right and crossed low but the striker, who did well to reach the ball, turned and shot wide.
Balotelli might even have had a hat-trick by the 13th minute as he found himself onside and in the clear but blazed over.
City suffered a blow when Zabaleta was forced off injured in the 19th minute and Kolo Toure took his place at right-back.
City's opener eventually came from an unlikely source as a speculative long-range effort from Gael Clichy took a deflection off Steinsson and beat Bogdan at the near post.
Balotelli then fired a free-kick over and missed with another effort before the magnificent Yaya Toure also saw an attempt drift wide as City maintained the momentum.
Bolton made a rare attack after half an hour as Nigel Reo-Coker got forward and whipped over a cross but David Ngog was unable to connect.
Ngog had a better opportunity moments later but Joe Hart stood tall to save.
Ryo Miyaichi then pounced on a Kolo Toure error to aim a shot at the bottom corner but Hart produced a fine fingertip save.
Balotelli appealed for a penalty after tangling with Knight but Mark Clattenburg gave nothing.
Kolo Toure went close but shot straight at Bogdan, who then denied Balotelli with his feet just before the break.
Balotelli spurned another gilt-edged chance within a minute of the restart as Gareth Barry presented him with a one-on-one with Bogdan with a superb defence-splitting pass.
Bogdan was alert to the situation and spread himself to save as Balotelli set himself.
Barry had a sight of goal himself but shot well over while Balotelli had another appeal for a penalty rejected on the edge of the area.
Kolo Toure burst forward and exchanged passes with Nasri before shooting across goal.
City's tempo then dropped but they almost benefited from a second own goal as, in trying to dispossess substitute Dzeko, Darren Pratley managed to shoot against his own crossbar.
City finally doubled their lead and Balotelli at last - and deservedly - got on the scoresheet with 21 minutes remaining.
Johnson was the provider as he weaved through the defence to set up Balotelli from close range with a nifty backheel which squeezed between Bogdan and Wheater.
Dzeko chipped forward to give Johnson a shooting chance but the winger shot wide.
Yaya Toure instigated another attack with a driving run but Nasri saw his shot blocked.
James Milner then came on for Nasri as City wound down the clock towards another victory.
"Southampton v Man City"
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