Robert Pollard & Robert Toole
A 3-0 home win in which City weren’t troubled. Sounds a lot like last season but up until yesterday that sort of afternoon had been absent from this campaign. Here we look at some of the main talking points from City’s win against Sunderland.
1 – City were totally dominant
With 60% possession and 28 goal attempts to Sunderland’s 8, it’s fair to say that City were at their dominant best yesterday, totally dictating play and not allowing the away side a sniff. This was the type of showing on which our incredible home form of last season was built. It’s so much easier when we are in that sort of mood. The midfield was outstanding, with Barry showing his usual appetite for keeping things ticking over with his passing ability and Milner (more on him later) outstanding. The scoreline was, on reflection, kind to Sunderland. Micah Richards could have scored a hattrick and Zabaleta, Yaya Toure and Siva were all unlucky to not get on the score sheet.
2 – The imperious David Silva
Typical City has said it before and we’ll say it again: the form of David Silva is crucial to our chances. When Silva is on song – we are on song. He was brilliant yesterday, always wanting the ball and looking menacing when in possession. Some of his passes were brilliant but his willingness to pick the ball up and create was the most pleasing aspect of his game. We need him firing and it looks like he’s warming up nicely.
3 – James Milner is back
James Milner has, in my opinion, been unlucky to be frozen out of the side this season. I’m a big fan of his. He runs further and harder than any other player, he’s strong, and his appetite to win is insatiable. In other words: he’s a very handy player to have around. He’s never going to be an outstanding attacking threat like Silva or Aguero but there is definitely a role for a player with his desire to win. We saw it yesterday and he was my Man of the Match.
4 – Absence of new signings
It is little surprise that City’s performance was so reminiscent of last season given that none of the summer signings were used (with the exception of Jack Rodwell coming on in second half injury time). City looked comfortable and the performance emphasised that the new signings are some way of being fully integrated into the team.