Man City v QPR preview
Man City have made a less than convincing start to the defence of their title, but a date with QPR provides an opportunity to build momentum.
Last Updated: 31/08/12 5:32pm
Manchester City have made a less than convincing start to the defence of their Premier League crown, but a home date with Queens Park Rangers on Saturday evening provides an opportunity to build momentum.
Former City boss Mark Hughes, who was unceremoniously dumped by the Blues in 2009, will be hoping his QPR side can spring an upset, but the capital outfit remain a work in progress following a busy summer of transfer activity.
City's formidable record at the Etihad Stadium, which includes an opening weekend victory over Southampton, would suggest that they are ideally placed to put an uninspiring display in a 2-2 draw with Liverpool last time out firmly behind them.
With Carlos Tevez happy and back among the goals, and with Roberto Mancini free to concentrate on the pursuit of points with the transfer window closed, the Blues will be determined to start putting down early markers.
QPR must also start showing that they are capable of competing at the highest level, with a shaky opening posing plenty of questions.
They were able to pick up their first point of the season at Norwich last weekend, but a new-look team is yet to gel and Hughes must settle on a preferred starting XI heading forward.
City prevailed in two five-goal thrillers between the two clubs last season - including a final day showdown which saw Mancini's men snatch the top flight crown in spectacular style - and QPR's last victory over the Blues came back in 2000, when both were plying their trade in the third tier of English football.Manchester City are still without striker Sergio Aguero and midfielder Gareth Barry for their Premier League clash against QPR.
Aguero (knee) is likely to be out until mid-September while Barry (abdominal) might still be three or four weeks away from a return despite a recent reserves outing.
England right-back Micah Richards (ankle) also remains on the sidelines.Esteban Granero could make his QPR debut at City after he received international clearance following his move from Real Madrid.
New goalkeeper Julio Cesar will not feature as he has not been given clearance and Samba Diakite is also missing for personal reasons.
Alejandro Faurlin and Kieron Dyer could feature after returning from their respective long-term layoffs in midweek.