Zabaleta hopeful of facing Stoke
Manchester City right-back Pablo Zabaleta expects to overcome a foot injury to feature in next weekend's FA Cup fourth-round trip to Stoke.
The Argentinian gave manager Roberto Mancini a scare when he limped off after 64 minutes in City's Barclays Premier League win over Fulham at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday. The 28-year-old had collided with defender Brede Hangeland moments earlier and was unable to run off the knock.
City's other senior right-backs Micah Richards and Maicon are currently both out with knee problems and Zabaleta told the club's website, www.mcfc.co.uk: "I took a kick on the top of my foot which caused me a lot of pain afterwards and that's the reason it was better that I came off."
He added: "Thankfully, the scan showed there was no serious damage.
"I should be fine for Saturday but it will be a couple of days before it is 100% again. I did some bike work on Monday morning and on Tuesday I will try some running so I'm sure I will be available for the game against Stoke."
Zabaleta has been one of City's most influential players this season having enjoyed a prolonged run in the side.
His efforts were acknowledged by fans when he received a big hand as he left the field against Fulham.
He said: "It was a brilliant ovation as I came off from a fantastic set of fans. I'd like to thank them for that and say that it means so much that people recognise and appreciate that you're giving 100% for the club and that's what I will always do for City."