Published on August 17th, 2015 | by Daniel Cheeseman0
Manchester City 3-0 Chelsea | Daniel Cheeseman
A New Era?
After yesterday’s clear statement of intent to Chelsea and the rest of the Premier League, I can’t help but think that this could be the start of a new era at Manchester City Football Club.
When I say a new era, I mean it in more ways than one. Firstly, I mean it in terms of how the new south stand has already greatly improved the atmosphere and made the Etihad feel like a Fortress once again, but I also mean it in terms of how City cast aside one of England’s – and Europe’s – top clubs with ease.
To expand upon my last point, I’m sure that most of you will agree that even though we’ve had a few good results against the ‘big’ teams in recent seasons, I don’t think we’ve ever really dominated those games or exuded much confidence, so seeing the Blues step up to the plate yesterday and put in a performance that was completely deserving of the final result made it all the more impressive.
As far as I’m concerned (ignoring the garbage Mourinho came out with on Match of the Day) the way the game panned out was that City were the far superior team in the first half, and could (and maybe should) have been at least 3 goals up at the break – if not for some outstanding goalkeeping by Asmir Begovic. In the second half I admit that things were a lot more even, Chelsea started to come into the game a bit more and for a while were the slightly better team, but in my opinion they were still nowhere near good enough to deserve a goal.
I’ve got to say that I was very impressed with our defensive performance against Chelsea, from what I recall Jose Mourinho’s side only had 2 dangerous shots on goal over the course of the 90 minutes – which is an impressive stat considering their undeniable attacking prowess.
Going forward it was business as usual – Sergio Aguero was a constant threat thanks to the support of David Silva, Yaya Toure, and in particular, Aleksander Kolarov – who I thought was outstanding for the entire 90 minutes. Not only was the Serbian supplying Aguero with chances that were pinpoint accurate, but the shift he put in defensively to clear the threat of Chelsea’s corners and set pieces on numerous occasions deserves some recognition.
But while Aleks came a very close second, for me the Man of the Match HAD to be Fernandinho. The Brazilian offered everything you would want from a central midfielder these days – he broke up the play expertly, very rarely lost possession, won plenty of tackles and was generally a massive nuisance whenever Chelsea tried to press forward. Even though he probably should have been sent off for his elbow on Diego Costa, I must admit that I couldn’t help cracking a smile when he gave the Spaniard a taste of his own medicine! 😉
In terms of the negatives, the only player I’d say I was somewhat disappointed with on Sunday was Raheem Sterling, and that’s only because of my high expectations of him after watching him play at Liverpool and during pre-season. As with last week I felt that his end product was a bit lacking and that he wasn’t quite on the same wavelength as the rest of the team, however, saying that I know it can be difficult to settle into a new team straight away (we are only two games in, after all) so for now I’m more than happy to give him the benefit of the doubt.
Next week we play Everton away – a game which I never take lightly, especially because they’ve been our ‘bogey’ team in recent seasons, but if we play anything like we’ve done in the opening two games we should have no problems dealing with Roberto Martinez’s side.
As Manuel Pellegrini said after the game, there definitely seems to be some ‘anger’ and ‘hunger’ to win back some silverware this season – and that’s music to every football fan’s ears, so let’s bring on the Toffees!