ESPN FC Extra: Man City-Chelsea preview
Samir Nasri has been passed fit to make his Manchester City comeback in Saturday’s FA Cup fifth-round tie against Chelsea.
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However, the France international is available again for the clash with the Blues at the Etihad Stadium, while Manuel Pellegrini will also welcome back Javi Garcia, who has not featured since the 3-0 victory against West Ham on Jan. 21.
“Samir Nasri and Javi Garcia are both fit for this game so it is very important for us,” Pellegrini said.
The Chilean conceded that City, who have failed to score in their last two games, have missed Nasri during his month on the sidelines.
He said: “It is impossible not to miss a very important player [such] as Samir Nasri. We also had other injuries before Samir, with David Silva, with Sergio Aguero, with Stevan Jovetic and [Vincent] Kompany, and we always manage to continue winning. In the last two weeks, that’s why I said it is not an excuse, we have injuries in the same position.”
City are still without top scorer Aguero, who has a calf injury, midfielder Fernandinho, who has a muscle strain, and centre-back Matija Nastasic, who has a knee problem.
“Nastasic, Fernandinho and Aguero are not fit,” Pellegrini added.
Pellegrini has selected Costel Pantilimon ahead of first-choice goalkeeper Joe Hart in the FA Cup this season, but he refused to confirm who will start on Saturday.
“Tomorrow we will see the 11 starters,” he said.