Manchester City v Southampton
Barclays Premier League
Sunday, August 19; 16.00
Micah Richards will likely be out of action for four weeks with an ankle injury, so won’t feature against Southampton today.
Joe Hart may not feature because of a back complaint, while new signing Joe Rodwell will also likely miss out alongside Gareth Barry, while Mario Balotelli may not feature because of a bout of conjunctivitis.
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Mancini still unhappy with squad
Roberto Mancini has once more lamented the lack of transfer activity at Manchester City this summer, on the eve of the first game of their Premier League title defence against Southampton on Sunday.
So far Everton’s Jack Rodwell is the only addition to Mancini’s title winning squad with little under two weeks until the end of the summer transfer window.
City were heavily linked with Arsenal’s Robin van Persie but eventually missed out to rivals Manchester United, while Mancini has also previously expressed a desire to land Daniele de Rossi, Athletic Bilbao’s Javi Martinez, and Liverpool’s Daniel Agger before the window snaps shut.
Previously Mancini has hit out at football administrator Brian Marwood over the lack of new arrivals, and has cut a frustrated figure on more than one occasion when talking to the press.
With a handful of absentees for their first game of the season against new boys Southampton, Mancini says he is still desperate for some new faces to bolster his squad.
"We need more players,” he told reporters. “We have 10 days, time is very short. We now have only 20, 21 with the young players. And this year there is the African Cup [of Nations]."
Asked directly about his transfer targets, Mancini said of Martinez: “We talked about him with the club. That was another very difficult situation. It wasn't easy."
When pushed for a response over his hopes of landing Agger or De Rossi the Italian replied: "No I don't think so, it's difficult."