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Adam Johnson takes a shot. Save made by Thomas Sorensen.
James Milner takes a shot. Save by Thomas Sorensen.
Booking for Adam Johnson for unsporting behaviour. Free kick awarded for a foul by Adam Johnson on Jermaine Pennant. Thomas Sorensen takes the free kick.
James Milner replaces Gareth Barry.
Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Jermaine Pennant, Header from close range by Matthew Upson misses to the right of the goal.
Centre by Jermaine Pennant, clearance by Stefan Savic.
Robert Huth challenges Sergio Aguero unfairly and gives away a free kick. Salif Diao comes on in place of Jonathan Woodgate. Indirect free kick taken by Gael Clichy.
Mario Balotelli takes a shot. Blocked by Robert Huth.
Centre by Adam Johnson, clearance by Robert Huth.
Handball by Robert Huth. Free kick taken by Joe Hart.
Foul by Sergio Aguero on Matthew Upson, free kick awarded. Kenwyne Jones goes off and Jermaine Pennant comes on. Free kick taken by Matthew Upson.
Unfair challenge on Joleon Lescott by Ricardo Fuller results in a free kick. Booking for Ricardo Fuller for unsporting behaviour. Free kick taken by Joleon Lescott.
Short corner taken by Samir Nasri.
Gareth Barry takes a shot. Thomas Sorensen makes a save.
David Silva leaves the field to be replaced by Mario Balotelli. Ricardo Fuller is brought on as a substitute for Cameron Jerome.
Shot by Vincent Kompany missed to the right of the net.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Gnegneri Toure Yaya by Jonathan Walters. Indirect free kick taken by Samir Nasri.
Outswinging corner taken by Dean Whitehead from the right by-line, Marc Wilson takes a shot. Joe Hart makes a save.
Stefan Savic joins the action as a substitute, replacing Micah Richards.
Effort from inside the six-yard box by Sergio Aguero goes wide left of the target.
The ball is swung over by Ryan Shotton, clearance made by Joleon Lescott.
Sergio Aguero takes a shot. Save by Thomas Sorensen.
Sergio Aguero fires in a goal from close range to the bottom left corner of the goal. Man City 3-0 Stoke.Samir Nasri provided the assist for the goal.
Gael Clichy concedes a free kick for a foul on Ryan Shotton. Dean Whitehead crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from right wing, clearance by Joleon Lescott.
Sergio Aguero takes a shot. Save made by Thomas Sorensen.
Ryan Shotton sends in a cross, blocked by Gael Clichy.
Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Samir Nasri, Robert Huth manages to make a clearance.
Gareth Barry sends in a cross, Jonathan Woodgate gets a block in.
Short corner worked by Samir Nasri.
Marc Wilson concedes a free kick for a foul on Samir Nasri. Shot comes in from Adam Johnson from the free kick, save by Thomas Sorensen.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Kenwyne Jones by Joleon Lescott. Indirect free kick taken by Matthew Upson.
The ball is sent over by Sergio Aguero.
Adam Johnson scores a goal from long range to the bottom left corner of the goal. Man City 2-0 Stoke.
Vincent Kompany takes a shot. Save by Thomas Sorensen. Sergio Aguero fires in a goal from inside the six-yard box to the bottom right corner of the goal. Man City 1-0 Stoke.Assist on the goal came from Vincent Kompany.
Samir Nasri decides to take the corner short.
The ball is swung over by Samir Nasri, clearance by Robert Huth.
The ball is crossed by Gael Clichy, Dean Whitehead makes a clearance.
The ball is sent over by Sergio Aguero, clearance made by Matthew Upson.
Foul by Micah Richards on Matthew Upson, free kick awarded. Micah Richards shown a yellow card. Indirect free kick taken by Thomas Sorensen.
Gnegneri Toure Yaya takes a shot. Robert Huth gets a block in.
Gael Clichy takes a shot. Robert Huth gets a block in.
Ryan Shotton is penalised for a handball. Gnegneri Toure Yaya restarts play with the free kick.
Samir Nasri has shot on goal from just outside the box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.
Samir Nasri concedes a free kick for a foul on Jonathan Walters. Free kick taken by Matthew Upson.
Adam Johnson takes a shot.
David Silva takes a shot. Blocked by Robert Huth.
Sergio Aguero takes a shot. Matthew Upson gets a block in.
Adam Johnson delivers the ball in from the corner, clearance made by Matthew Upson.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Joleon Lescott on Kenwyne Jones. Matthew Upson restarts play with the free kick.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Jonathan Walters on Joleon Lescott. Joe Hart takes the indirect free kick.
Cameron Jerome sends in a cross, Joe Hart makes a save.
The official flags Micah Richards offside. Thomas Sorensen takes the free kick.
Samir Nasri produces a cross, Jonathan Walters makes a clearance.
City not willing to budge on Tevez
Manchester City are standing firm in their insistence that Carlos Tevez will not be made available for loan.
Officials from AC Milan are set to meet with representatives from City on Thursday to discuss a possible deal for the Argentinian striker.
Milan have proposed taking the 27-year-old on a free loan in January with a promise to buy him permanently in the summer.
Yet City have long said they are only interested in selling the player and manager Roberto Mancini again underlined that stance on Tuesday.
Mancini said: "Milan know they can't get him on loan, they know it very well. But if they want to buy Carlos, for us, that is okay.
"We hope that Carlos can find a good solution for him, and that he can come back and play football. But they can't have him on loan. This is sure, 100%. The best solution for us is to sell him."
Tevez remains in Argentina ahead of a possible move when the transfer opens next month.
Paris Saint-Germain have also been heavily linked with the former West Ham and Manchester United forward but Milan would appear the front-runners, if they can find a deal to suit City.
City, the Barclays Premier League leaders, are back in action when Stoke visit the Etihad Stadium.
The Potters were Mancini's first opponents after he was appointed two years ago this week.
City won that game but were given a torrid time by Tony Pulis' men when the sides met three times in February 2010, being held to two draws and losing an FA Cup replay.
City redressed the balance with two victories over them in a week last May, including the FA Cup final, but Stoke are now in fine form after four successive wins.
Mancini said: "They are a very difficult team. It will be a tough game.
"Also we play every three days, so tomorrow we must play a good game.
"We should play football very well but against Stoke it is always very difficult."
Stoke central defender Robert Huth believes revenge will not be on the agenda when the Potters bid to extend their winning streak to five games against City.
The German, who scored in the 2-1 victory at Wolves, has predicted a difficult time against a City side leading the table after winning their past 15 home matches.
Huth said of the FA Cup final defeat: "It doesn't mean anything really, that happened seven or eight months ago.
"They won the game fair and square and we have moved on from that.
"We don't want any sort of revenge, we are just concerned about getting the results we want, for us, and not worrying about whether it impacts the other side or not."
Huth has been enthused by City's run in the league and also progress to the last 32 of the Europa League.
"It's been a great few weeks for us in terms of picking up points and progressing in Europe, but we know that Wednesday night will be incredibly tough for us," he told the club website, www.stokecityfc.com.
"They are one of the best sides in the country, if not Europe, so we are under absolutely no illusions as to the size of the task in front of us because they are going so well at the moment.
"We have had a few good results though so we can take that into the game with us; but even with that we know it will be an incredibly tough evening for us. We will give it our best shot though."
Stoke could be without both Ryan Shawcross and Glenn Whelan for the difficult trip.
Defender Shawcross is definitely out as he is suspended after picking up his fifth yellow card in the win at Wolves.
Midfielder Whelan is a doubt with a calf muscle injury suffered at Molineux and full-back Andy Wilkinson is likely to miss out again with a back problem.
Aguero double keeps City top
Sergio Aguero scored twice as Manchester City beat Stoke 3-0 to ensure they will be top of the table on Christmas Day for the first time since 1929.
With one-time hero Carlos Tevez due to be at the centre of talks between City officials and their AC Milan counterparts on Thursday, the man who stepped into his shoes as the most popular South American at the club took centre stage.
Signed for a club record #38million from Atletico Madrid in the summer, unlike Tevez, who remains back in Argentina and has been nothing but trouble for the past 12 months, Aguero has not been a moment's bother.
At least, he has not been a problem to City. Opposition defences may choose to disagree.
Beaten by City in last season's FA Cup final, Stoke were the latest to feel the force of Aguero's power, the striker bagging a goal either side of the interval to take his seasonal tally to 15.
Adam Johnson enjoyed himself too, completing his first full 90 minutes in the Premier League since the middle of October and marking the occasion with a powerful first-half strike.
Although Kolo Toure suggested earlier in the week that City had a secret plan for facing Stoke, it was the visitors who had the weapon.
It was largely defensive though, with Pulis utilising four burly defenders, including Jonathan Woodgate at full-back, with another solid bank of four in front of them.
For a time it worked as City struggled to fashion a clear-cut opening.
Johnson did hit a thunderous effort against the bar but only thanks to a pretty hefty deflection off Marc Wilson.
It was a limited plan though, belying the fine run of form Stoke have suddenly found themselves in after a period in the doldrums.
And they were made to pay just before the half hour after Samir Nasri and David Silva worked a short corner routine that allowed the Spain star to race forward unopposed after his team-mate's dummy run had fooled two defenders.
Silva exploited the opportunity by slipping a pass through to Yaya Toure, who in turn squared into the six-yard area.
Thomas Sorensen was equal to Vincent Kompany's close-range effort but the Dane could only push the ball into the path of Aguero, who bundled home from barely a yard.
On the touchline, Tony Pulis was livid, believing the officials had missed an offside somewhere in the melee.
There did not seem to be a direct involvement of play at any stage though, and Pulis' ire was probably more to do with the knowledge that, once behind, Stoke were going to find it very difficult to fashion an equaliser.
Difficult became virtually impossible 10 minutes before the break when slack control from Jon Waters, who failed to kill Dean Whitehead's pass out of defence, allowing it to run onto Johnson.
The England winger did not require a second invitation, smashing a brutal effort through a packed penalty area, Sorensen partially unsighted as it flashed into the corner.
Johnson came close to bagging another just before the break when Sorensen unconvincingly shovelled his curling free-kick round the post.
The former Middlesbrough man was having a productive evening, although he was matched in that by Aguero, who after forcing Sorensen into another save, bagged his second.
It was a goal clinical in its efficiency as Gareth Barry slipped a pass out to Nasri, whose low cross from the right split the Stoke defenders and allowed Aguero to finish at the far post.
Aguero was 90 seconds too late to claim the Premier League's 20,000th goal but he nearly completed his hat-trick shortly afterwards, when he was sent through by Toure, but only succeeded in flicking his shot wide of the far post.
Blues manager Roberto Mancini took the opportunity to rotate his players, including replacing Silva with Mario Balotelli.
Although the game was winding down, Balotelli is not one for staying out of the way for long and was not happy when referee Mike Dean turned down his penalty appeal when Robert Huth used an arm to block a shot.
It was all pantomime stuff though, unlike City's title challenge, which is very real indeed.
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