Mancini waits on Tevez ahead of FA Cup final

Updated: 13 May 2011 12:08 IST

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini will wait until Saturday, just hours before kick-off, to decide whether Carlos Tevez is fit to start in the FA Cup final.

Mancini waits on Tevez ahead of FA Cup final

Manchester:

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini will wait until Saturday, just hours before kick-off, to decide whether Carlos Tevez is fit to start in the FA Cup final.

But the Italian manager has cleared Gareth Barry to face Stoke.

Tevez, City's captain, put himself in the frame for Wembley by playing the last seven minutes of Tuesday's victory over Tottenham, which secured Champions League football for the Eastlands club, to make his long-awaited comeback from a torn hamstring.

Mancini remains cautious over going in with the Argentina striker, whose last start came against Liverpool a month ago, right from the start but plans to give him every opportunity to prove his fitness.

And he revealed England international Gareth Barry, who has missed the last two games with a hamstring injury, is back in contention.

"Carlos is getting better," said Mancini. "We now have two days to decide if he can play or not."

"At this stage I still don't know whether he could play or not, we will make a decision on Saturday morning."

"The good thing is we have no other injury problems because Gareth trained with the team on Wednesday."

Mancini now aims to make it a perfect week by leading City to their first trophy in 35 years and his first in English football.

"I'm excited by this and very proud for my players," he added. "I always saw this game on TV in Italy - Manchester United against Chelsea and I watched when Harry Redknapp won with Portsmouth."

"This is a very important moment for me in my career. The FA Cup is very important, it is my first final and the first time Manchester City have been in it for a long time. It will be a special day."

"Our target was the Champions League and after that we wanted to get into one of the final. We are in the FA Cup final. It's a good moment for us."

"We have got fourth spot but now we should keep our concentration. If we claim six points (from the last two Premier League matches) maybe we can arrive in third position."

Mancini is excited by the prospect of leading his team out in the final of a competition he said had far more prestige than its Italian equivalent.

"In Italy, the cup final is only important when you arrive in the semi and final. Before it is not important in the early rounds like England. They don't have this importance."

However, Mancini admits his team face a difficult task against a Stoke side they have beaten just once in their last six attempts.

"Stoke are a strong team, very difficult team," Mancini said. "If we want to win on Saturday, we should pay attention. It will be very, very hard."

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