jamie goode's wine blog: C'mon Citeh...the pain continues

Monday, October 20, 2008

C'mon Citeh...the pain continues

Spent the evening watching Manchester City's Premier League encounter with Newcastle United, with my City-supporting chum Rob round at Pranay's house (he's a friend who has both Setanta and Sky Sports - he's planning to get up at 5 am tomorrow to watch India finish off Australia in the test match, which would be a fantastic result. Respect).

Things started well with City winning a slightly controversial penalty and Newcastle having the offender sent off. But then, just before half time, Newcastle pulled a goal back. Shortly after the break, they scored another. It was amazing: City had close to 70% of the posession and an extra man, but were losing! Life is never straightforward following this club. Eventually we equalized, but it was a strange and rather disappointing game that should have been won.

My verdict? City need more options than *just* playing a very tidy, neat passing game that relies on the killer pass from the edge of the box. They also need to threaten from both flanks, with the options to attack from slow build-up play down the middle, or from wing play, or from more direct balls from deeper positions. They need to be able to play on the break, but also to take the game to the opposition. Variety like this stretches defences.

For me, the most effective player tonight was Shaun Wright-Phillips. He's the real deal. Robinho is clearly a genius, but he has to be careful not to play too deep, where he is less effective. Martin Petrov is sorely missed. Ched Evans looked pretty good, again, coming on as a late substitute. I wonder whether Jo might find his position under threat when Benjani is fit again?

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At 9:14 AM, Anonymous Keith Prothero said...

Do not forget our little wager Jamie about your team finishing in the top 6!!

Setanta Sports rocks as with the package you also get NASN which gives great coverage of many american sports.

At 12:26 PM, Anonymous Steve said...

Not strictly true Keith. I have Setanta (on Virgin cable) and do not get NASN. Ideally I'd get ESPN coverage, because an old friend is now a 'soccer' commentator over there. He probably told them he'd played for Liverpool United or something.
Your analysis of City's ineffectuality is spot on Jamie. If they can't entertain they just aren't MCFC. I can't see past Chelsea for the title- hell, they nearly won the European Cup (and deserved to) without a manager...

At 6:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just shows that you can't buy success!

At 9:34 PM, Blogger Jamie said...

Anon, apart from the single purchase of Robinho on transfer day deadline, City haven't yet spent their riches - purchases before then were in line with other premiership teams (Kompany 6m, Jo 19 m, Wright-Phillips 10 m, plus Zabaleta and Glauber - but some money was brought in from selling, too).

When Petrov is back, I reckon there'll be a lot more variety and attacking intent.

At 11:35 PM, Blogger Simon said...

You might be the richest club in the world, but you're still city.

At 6:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, Jamie, apart from the modest 32 million spent on Robinho, you're right.

At 9:48 PM, Blogger Paul Tudor said...

Nicky Butt played an awesome game the other night, so on that basis Newcastle thoroughly deserved the point.

I am not sure about the midfield workrate of these Brazilians that City has, suspect they need a bit more metal in there...


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