Mancini preaches Euro patience
- Thu 19 Aug 2010, 2:20PM
- Posted by Chris Bailey in Timisoara
Roberto Mancini has warned his players and City fans to be patient when the Premier League giants take on FC Timisoara in tonight’s the Europa League play-off encounter.
The manager is expecting the Romanian side to play the game of its life in the Dan Paltinisanu Stadium.
Mancini accepts that the Blues are hot favourites to make the group stage that begins next month but is taking nothing for granted.
“It is a difficult draw because everyone expects us to progress but we have watched Timisoara and they are a hard working side who will see us a great possible scalp,” he said.
Europe used to produce games that were easy for big sides but no longer. To win by five or six goals is not normal any more
...Mancini on Timisoara
"You have to be patient and remember that there are two games in this tie.
“I always think that the first game in any European competition is the hardest and we are still in the very early stages of my players becoming a team. Timisoara have already played four league games and two in the Europa Cup.
“I have plenty of options for the game but at this stage of the season I want to give as much chance as possible to new players to settle into the team and learn about each other so we can grow as a group. It is a balance between that and making sure that certain players do not become overused or tired.
“It is an important game because we want to progress in every competition and there is no room to play less than 100%. The main thing is to ensure that the score after the second game at the City of Manchester Stadium is in our favour.”
Mancini insisted that he would not be prioritising the different competitions in which City will compete this season.
“I don’t do that,” he stressed. “We as a team must change or mindset and mentality and go for every competition with the same intensity. It is the only way to be successful over a long period of time. The Europa League is a very important competition.”
There will be no James Milner (not registered), Aleksandar Kolarov (ankle), Jerome Boateng (Knee) or Wayne Bridge (broken toe) this evening for a match that kicks off at 10pm local time (8pm UK).
In addition both Nigel de Jong and Mario Balotelli left training last night sporting ice packs.
Either Republic of Ireland youngster Greg Cunningham or Joleon Lescott is likely to start at left back.
Mancini has said he will make two or three changes with Balotelli almost to make his debut at some stage if he is fit.
As reported on mcfc.co.uk yesterday lunchtime, Joe Hart will continue in goal.