Martin Demichelis made his first appearance in a Manchester City shirt as he continues his recovery from a knee injury.
The Argentinian defender joined City at the start of September from Atletico Madrid but damaged knee ligaments in his first week of training.
Demichelis played 45 minutes in the Elite Development Squad's 2-2 draw with Rochdale on Wednesday night and is now looking forward to making his first-team debut.
With a return date for captain Vincent Kompany still uncertain, Demichelis' return to fitness has come at a good time, although Saturday's trip to West Ham may come too soon.
Demichelis, who played under City boss Manuel Pellegrini at River Plate and Malaga, told www.mcfc.co.uk: "It was important to play and get the confidence back. My knee responded very well and I'm very happy after working very hard to get here.
"It was difficult at the beginning with the injury but that allowed me to meet everybody at the club and feel confident and comfortable with everybody so it's fantastic now and I'm looking forward to my debut."
Midfielder Jack Rodwell also played in the game, which City won on penalties.
The 22-year-old, who has been dogged by injury problems during his time at City, has made only one first-team appearance this season, in the goalless draw with Stoke in September.
Rodwell is hoping to be given the nod for West Ham, saying: "I'm fit. I proved it playing 90 minutes so we'll see. I haven't trained too much but I'm available for selection."
He will also hope to force his way back into the England squad after Roy Hodgson's side booked their place at the World Cup finals in Brazil with victory over Poland.
Rodwell's last appearance for his country came in a friendly in Brazil in June, and he said: "Brazil's looming in the future and obviously I've got one eye on it but one step at a time. Hopefully I'll get in the (City) team soon and keep playing."