Mancini: SWP has role to play

BY foxsports • February 14, 2011

Wright-Phillips is expected to start on Tuesday in the Europa League round of 32 first leg against Aris Salonika. He impressed Mancini when he came on in the second half of the 2-1 derby defeat by Manchester United on Saturday. With Adam Johnson injured, Wright-Phillips looks to have been given a second chance after handing in a transfer request that was rejected. Mancini said: "When Shaun played in the second half he played very well and was very important to us. "I said 20 days ago when we lost Adam Johnson that we could have a problem, because he could have changed this game. "But we don't have him in this moment and it is maybe important that Shaun can play now." Mancini has named a strong squad for the game in Greece as City resume their campaign after a two-month break. Leading scorer Carlos Tevez is included even though he has rarely featured in the competition this season, as is Mario Balotelli following a knee problem. Tevez will be looking to improve on his 20-goal tally for the season while Balotelli was not involved at Old Trafford. New signing Edin Dzeko also travelled out with the squad as did Jo, who has found himself further down the pecking order. Midfielder Michael Johnson has received a boost after his injury problems by joining the group. However, James Milner is ruled out of the first leg game after being injured in the derby and Nigel de Jong is absent because of an ankle problem. Aris are protecting their 40-year unbeaten run in European competition, spanning 24 matches, at their Kleanthis Vikelidis Stadium. However caretaker-coach Ioannis Michalitsios, who played for the club, fears the worst. He said: "Manchester City are a powerhouse. Emmanuel Adebayor was on the bench and now he is a first-team player on loan at Real Madrid. "There is no secret to Aris' home success. It's a record that spans four decades and many generations of players. The common factor is the fans. "Our supporters transmit their energy to the players - they can lift them when they are feeling down, they sing non-stop for two hours, it's impressive."

share story