Published on September 18th, 2014 | by Daniel Cheeseman2
Bayern Munich 1-0 Manchester City | The City Nitty Gritty
“So Close, Yet So Far (Again)”
It seems like we have adopted a new motto for when we play in Europe now – “So close, yet so far”.
The number of times where we have only just missed out on success in the Champions League is getting unbelievable.
Two seasons ago we were the first team ever to have over 10 points in the group stage, without advancing to the knockout stages. In the very same season we went 2-1 up against Real Madrid at the Bernabeu with 5 minutes to go, and we still somehow managed to lose 3-2. There are several other moments which I haven’t listed that I can recall, and the only reason/excuse I can think of as to why this keeps on happening is one we have used for years – typical City, but surely we’ve passed that stage by now?
However, despite the loss, I still think there are plenty of positives to take out of yesterday’s game, as well as ways to improve.
Joe Hart was outstanding.
He always seems to up his game in the Champions League, past games that I can remember where he put in a similar performance was away at Real Madrid and home against Borussia Dortmund a couple of seasons ago. Joe was our stand out man on both those occasions, and last night he showed us once again why he is still England’s number 1, and our first choice goalkeeper.
Despite speculation over Joe’s abilities in recent weeks, there’s one thing you can never doubt about him – his passion. The England international looked distraught after the game, and it’s understandable, because I honestly feel that if that passion had rubbed off on all the other members of yesterday’s team, we probably would have come away with all 3 points.
Fernandinho was a rock in midfield.
The Brazilian international was, in my opinion, our best player on the night (other than Joe Hart). He looked hungry throughout the game and did a fantastic job of attacking and defending.
Although, at times, it was like he was not only playing his own role, but also filling in for the extremely lethargic-looking Yaya Toure.
Which gets onto my next point…
Yaya has not been himself this season.
Many believe that last season was the best of Yaya’s career, and he was voted by myself and many other City fans as Player of the Year. However, I don’t know what has happened to him this season.
We are coming up to our fifth game in the Barclays Premier League now, of which Yaya has featured in 3, and he still hasn’t kicked into gear. I’m starting to wonder if Yaya will ever reach the same peak as he did last season, as issues with his Brother dying and the whole birthday cake stuff may have left a mental scar on the Ivorian.
I hope I am wrong, and that he ups his game against Chelsea on Sunday, as he is one of those players who can change a game in the blink of an eye; that’s why he’s my favourite player.
Bayern were in for the taking.
The German champions were without their star men Franck Ribery, Arjen Robben and Bastian Schweinsteiger. Knowing this, we should have gone into the game with no fear of attacking them, due to the fact that we wouldn’t be as vulnerable on the counter-attack if we had committed more men forward.
If we were ever going to get a better chance of beating Pep Guardiola’s side, it was this one, and the fact that they still managed to beat the Champions of England with a weakened side shows the sort of level they are playing at.
Overall, I thought we played well, and were very unlucky not to get at least a point.
You could argue that we should have had a penalty for Benatia’s tackle on David Silva, but I think Bayern also had a couple of shouts for a penalty – but that’s just my opinion!
Anyway, onto Chelsea now. This run of tough games never seems to come to an end, and I’m not sure if the Chelsea game has come at the best or the worst time. Sunday’s game could be the perfect chance for the Blues to bounce back, but it could also backfire and result in our first back-to-back defeats in a long time – we’ll have to wait and see!
But whether we win, lose or draw – I don’t half love being a City fan! 😉