Date: 23rd January 2019 at 10:02pm
Written by:
Burton Albion
0 – 1
Manchester City

Pirelli Stadium (Agg 0-10)

League Cup Semi-Final 2nd Leg

16/02/2019 7:45 pm

Attendance: 6,912

Referee: Kevin Friend of Leicester

Burton Albion Manchester City
Agüero (26')
40 Bradley Collins 49 Aro Muric
10 Lucas Akins 3 Danilo
5 Kyle McFadzean 34 Philippe Sandler
6 Ben Turner Hutchinson 40' 50 Eric Garcia
14 Damien McCrory 35 Oleks Zinchenko Nmecha 67'
23 Stephen Quinn Fox 45' 17 Kevin De Bruyne Mendy 63'
22 Kieran Wallace 18 Fabian Delph
16 Marcus Harness 47 Philip Foden
18 Will Miller 26 Riyad Mahrez
11 David Templeton 10 Sergio Agüero Gabriel Jesus 63'
27 Liam Boyce Daniel 77' 83 Ian Carlo Poveda-Ocampo

Substitutes

1 Stephen Bywater 5 John Stones
2 John Brayford 22 Benjamin Mendy
3 Jake Buxton 32 Daniel Grimshaw
9 Joe Sbarra 33 Gabriel Jesus
12 Ben Fox 61 Felix Nmecha
19 Reece Hutchinson 74 Luke Bolton
26 Colin Daniel 89 Taylor Richards

Game Statistics

6 Goal attempts 10
2 On Target 4
0 Corners 2
4 Fouls 10
0 Yellow Cards 0
0 Red Cards 0
30 % 70

Johnny On The Spot: #LONDONCALLING. For the first time in Manchester City’s history,  the club will take part at Wembley next month in a second consecutive League Cup Final, the Blues having negotiated safely an entertaining if bitterly cold night on a dangerous pitch in Burton upon Trent.

A handful of hacks and clueless pundits have suggested that Pep Guardiola’s men should have declared at half time in Manchester earlier in the month in order to show Burton Albion respect, wholly ignorant of the strength of the XI the City boss had selected in full respect of the competition and opponents who had beaten Premier League side Burnley, as well as Championship teams Aston Villa, Nottingham Forest and Middlesbrough en route to this Semi Final. It was evident that Burton, backed by a record Pirelli Stadium crowd boosted by 1600 roaring Blues were determined to go out in a blaze of glory. To their immense credit they gave it a real go in tricky conditions.

The covers came off cricket style in the hour before kick off. The tarpaulins had been deployed to thwart icy conditions. What they appeared to do was compound moisture underneath. By the opening exchanges of the second half, players were sliding about all over the shop. The Blues celebrated medical team no doubt winced at some of the physical impacts.

Full of heart and industry, Burton battled for everything throughout. Their work rate epitomised by Liam Boyce who pushed City’s young centre halves hard and was unfortunate not to score. Giving and going, holding up, the works. Nigel Clough deployed a high press for much of the night, infrequently unsettling City keeper Aro Muric and his aforementioned young team-mates. In fairness, guiding the ball out from the back was not that well facilitated by the slithery surface, either.

The City squad again played well within themselves here, the winning of only 2 corners late on indicative of the reticence to go at full throttle. One could argue that game management was engaged in from the first whistle, but the upshot is that we have another cup final to look forward to and have registered 7 straight wins since the Boxing Day defeat at Leicester, 5 consecutive clean sheets adds further sheen.

Certain twitchy media types, perhaps a little unsettled by Liverpool’s over reliance upon lady luck and penalties to secure Premier League wins of late have been drawing increasing tut-tut attention to City’s packed fixture list while their choice of champions elect fill their spare time kicking up sand in Dubai. An intensive run of games has given the Blues an opportunity to regain momentum in cruise control, to rehabilitate injured key players needing rhythm, to rest the more overworked stars and to blood our youngsters. – Focus sapping warm weather breaks or cup finals? We’ll take the latter across Planet Blue!

JB’s Man Of The Match: Eric Garcia. 18 years old this month, the young Spaniard delivered another accomplished performance chalking up over 100 completed passes.

 

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