Manchester City v Liverpool
Barclays Premier League
Tuesday, January 3rd; 20:00
Manchester City are sweating over the fitness of Mario Balotelli after the Italian missed Sunday's defeat to Sunderland.
Luis Suarez is expected to return to the fold for Liverpool after serving a one-match ban following a gesture made during the defeat at Fulham.
Steve Gerrard could make his first start since recovering from an infected foot following his goal against Newcastle United last week.
Dalglish doesn't fear City
Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish says his side don't fear Premier League leaders Manchester City going into the pair's showdown at the Etihad Stadium.
Eleven points separate the two sides at the mid-way point in the league, with City's spending power credited with their instant rise, while The Reds' own spending spree has improved their fortunes this season.
With the returning Luis Suarez and Steven Gerarrd in their ranks, Dalglish says his side don't fear their big-spending counterparts.
"They are a fantastic side but so are we so we are not going to go there and be scared," said Dalglish.
"It is all well and good saying they have loads of money but they have a good team.
"The money they have everyone else would love to have but unfortunately they don't. We will go and play whichever 11 they put on the pitch and it doesn't matter how much they cost.
"But we have the utmost respect for what they have done, we will respect and appreciate their ability.
"They are certainly a really difficult side to play against and we have our work cut out but we will work hard and fingers crossed we will come home with a result."
While Liverpool come into the game having ended their year with a bang, City have failed to win either of their last two games, with 2012 beginning with defeat to Martin O'Neill's Sunderland.
City's record in the league bodes well for Mancini's men, with the Anfield club having won only one of the last five meetings at the Etihad, and the Italian boss has warned The Reds to expect a backlash come kick-off.
“The Sunderland match is now finished, and sometimes it is important to be disappointed, not to forget everything after the game," Mancini said.
“This is how you improve. Sometimes it’s too easy to forget everything after a game, and I don’t agree with that situation.
“Sometimes it’s important players understand that whether they play well or play badly, that they put everything on the pitch. If they understand that they didn’t do well, maybe they will do better in future.
“Now we face Liverpool, who are a good, strong team and it will be a very tough game.”
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