Manchester City blogger and VMC member, Lando78 sent us the following.
Why tonight’s game might not be the foregone conclusion many Blues might think.
Most City fans would be forgiven for thinking that tonight’s game against Villa is going to be another exhibition of attacking brilliance marred by the inevitable albeit irrelevant, by then, defensive lapse. Some might even be thinking for every goal we concede Big Dunnie will kindly oblige with a 2 or 1 special of his own speciality.
After all, results don’t lie and we go to Villa on a run of six victories in seven competitive games, and with our only defeat coming in controversial fashion in the Derby where a draw was stolen from us in the 126th minute of stoppage time at Prawn Sandwichville.
We also have the best attacking options in the Premier League, with 4 in 4 Adebayor back in a mix that packs more explosiveness than a Molotov Cocktail in a gas station. Not only is Roque Santa Cruz fit and chomping at the bit, but twin terrors Carlito Tevez and Craig Bellamy have been starved and gagged (in Craig’s case) all week and are hungry to turn Dunne and Co into mincemeat.
Our midfield, the envy of almost every Premier League team has been further strengthened by the returns of Michael ‘I could of played rugby’ Johnson and a refreshed Superman. Martin ‘I don’t even share me Pringles, so don’t expect me to pass you the ball’ Petrov is on a mission to rule the world, while SWP must be feeling the krytonite stare of a certain young Slovakian prodigy, knowing that he has to produce week in week out in this world cup season.
Behind them, sit Basher and Gnasher, messrs De Jong and Barry who screen our back five, whilst snapping opponents in half and burying them under the corner flags. If that’s not bad enough, should one of them get slightly bored or tired of breaking things, a bigger beast is ready to be unleashed from the bench in Vincent ‘Floorless Victory’ Kompany.
With the best goalkeeper currently available in the league in Shay Given protected by a defence marshalled by captain of the Guard Kolo Toure we fear nobody. After all, at right back we have the technical Zabaleta or the powerhouse (or power-lifter depending on your view of him) that is Micah Richards.
At left back we have the swashbuckling Wayne Bridge backed up by ‘I played in that match when we beat The Rags’ Silvinho or Toure’s central defensive partner Joleen Lescott. Add a fit again but short on match practice Vincent Kompany and you struggle to understand where a defeat can come from against Villa.
So back to my original point. Most Blue’s might be forgiven for thinking that tonight’s game will be another three points for the Sky Blue Juggernaught. When in truth the game against our Midland’s rivals will be a Battle Royale of the highest order.
I could sit here and tell you that there’s a high probability that Ashley Young will rip either Richards or Zabaleta a new A-Hole or that Gabby Agbonlahor and Big Jon Carew will have too much pace, power and height for Lescott and Toure.
I could also argue a case for the occasion being too much for Gareth Barry on his return with him going to pieces, whilst the ever dependable Richard Dunne will brush off his emotional occasion off with a rock solid performance at the back… but then I think about everything I’ve just written and every negative bone that has pained me for the last 30 years disappears in the blink of an eye.
As long as our lads are at the races we’ll be like the infamous Peperami Animal… too spicy for em!
Aston Villa: Friedel, Cuellar, Collins, Dunne, Warnock, Milner, Petrov, Delph, Young, Agbonlahor, Carew, Sidwell, Heskey, Guzan, Shorey, Beye, Reo-Coker, Gardner, Delfouneso.
Manchester City: Given, Taylor, Richards, Zabaleta, Toure, Lescott, Bridge, Sylvinho, Garrido, De Jong, Barry, Johnson, Wright-Phillips, Ireland, Ball, Weiss, Vidal, Bellamy, Santa Cruz, Petrov, Tevez, Adebayor.
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