Has anyone recovered from the first 5 minutes of Saturday’s abject performance against Leicester?
Many Blues probably thought they were dreaming as City’s tissue paper defence simply dissolved in the first few minutes of the match. A feeling which returned before 20 minutes were out when they were sliced apart again to make the deficit 3-0. Unfortunately it was all too believable.
Manchester City’s very own ‘Nightmare Before Christmas’
City return to Sandcastle Etihad for the visit of Watford Town this Wednesday for the latest instalment of Pep Guardiola’s Great Experiment in the Premier League Football Laboratory. It used to be that the tension before a game built to maximum as we approached kick off. That feeling has now shifted 60 minutes earlier when the latest jumble of names are drawn from Pep’s Mysterious Tactical Sorting Hat and we all try to guess exactly which player will be playing where. And for how long.
The game is not being televised and I am having a serious internal monologue as to whether I have the courage to try and find a stream to watch the game. Such is the level of my discouragement at the nature of our play last weekend and the disheartening manner in which we were eviscerated that I am questioning whether I have the stomach to face devoting another 90+ minutes of my life to the same sense of anxiety and frustration I experienced on Saturday evening.
For views on some of the implications drawn from the ‘performance’ against Leicester check out the ‘Three things we learned’ thread right here.
Watford arrive sitting in a comfortable 7th place in the league and they will be relishing the opportunity to play City right now. In fact most teams and their fans will be eagerly checking the fixture list to see when they will be facing Manchester City. No longer with a sense of foreboding but with an eagerness and excitement that usually accompanies and looking forward to their side ripping our defence to shreds. Deeney may well return for the Hornets but during his absence Okaka didn’t do a bad job last weekend where he scored two goals in their defeat of Everton. The first one was a peach – check it out albeit the picture quality is not very good.
I hope our ‘defenders’ have been watching’?
City will still be without Aguero and Fernandinho as they continue their domestic suspensions. The latter was sorely missed against Leicester although whether he could have single handily prevented the rot is unclear. Iheanacho was simply bullied out of the game last Saturday. Playing against strong, experienced central defenders he didn’t get a look in as City’s players endlessly and fruitlessly recycled the ball in the latest version of Pep’s latest formula ‘Possession Without Purpose’ (PWP). Someone seriously needs to man up and tell him that there are no prizes, NONE, for being the team that has the highest possession statistics at the end of the season. We had the ball for 78% of the game last weekend. Yes, a breath taking SEVENTY EIGHT PERCENT…and did precisely nothing with it until Leicester switched off having resorted their 3 goal advantage. The faith of City’s supporters could be tested yet further as our coach sticks to his guns and continues to mix and match his player ingredients and formations in the search for footballing perfection.
Otamendi is likely to return after serving his one match ban. For all his faults he provides a bit more steel than we witnessed with Sagna and Kolarov last Saturday.
A resounding 6-0 win would be a welcome relief but any kind of win would be welcomed.
Come On City!!!
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