I could definitely get used to this. After a season in which wins against even the most moderate of opposition has been difficult, City have won three straight games at a canter. The latest was a comfortable 2-0 win against Fulham. Here’s my quick take on the match.
David Silva was head and shoulders above everybody else on the pitch yesterday. He was his usual influential self yesterday – the man the other City players always try to get on the ball – but he also added a couple of goals to his game, something that has been lacking this season. Both finishes were lovely, particularly the second, and he should have made it a hat-trick when clean through towards the end of the match. If there is one criticism of Silva, it’s that he doesn’t score enough goals. Hopefully, this brace will kick-start that part of his game. One thing is for certain: if City are to do well this season, David Silva will play a vital role.
Edin Dzeko is a player I have written about throughout the season. The Bosnian divides opinion. On the one hand, he scores vital goals and offers City a different style of attack. His fans like to talk about his ability to hold the ball up and bring others into play, whilst causing the opposition problems in the box with his physical, aerial threat. I struggle to see it. For me, Dzeko is a wonderful professional and top man but he just hasn’t got the class to play consistently in this City side. I would sell him and buy a replacement.
This was another performance in which he frustrated. He is greedy and wasteful, often chooses the wrong option, and generally isn’t on the same wavelength as the likes of Silva and Tevez. I’d wish him all the luck in the world and pack him off elsewhere. He isn’t good enough.
Clichy’s Excellence on Show
Gael Clichy deserves a special mention. He offers a great attacking threat from left full-back and he was one of our stand-out players against Fulham. In fact, he’s had a fine season. The £7 million fee we paid Arsenal was recouped long ago – he’s been terrific.
Pablo’s Injury Scare
Our Player of the Season so far – Pablo Zabaleta – took a nasty knock and had to leave the field. It was a worrying moment given the fact that our other right-backs, Maicon and Micah Richards, are also unavailable. It looked like one of those that could have been a metatarsal injury, meaning a 3-4 week lay-off. However, David Platt intimated post-match that it was just a knock and the Argentinian should be fit for Stoke nest Saturday. Every City fan damn well hopes so.
Winning Without Yaya
Prior to the Africa Cup of Nations, much was made about Yaya Toure’s absence and the effect that would have on City. So far, so good. He has missed three matches and City have won them all comfortably without conceding a single goal; beating Watford 3-0, Arsenal 2-0 and now Fulham 2-0, with each of those matches being a relative stroll in the park.
However, despite having missed three matches already, the Ivory Coast haven’t actually played a game yet, meaning City will have to do without him for a while longer. The final is scheduled for February 10th and it seems likely the Ivory Coast will make it that far. If they do, he will miss Stoke away in the FA Cup, QPR away, Liverpool at home and Southampton away. James Milner’s form means that some of Yaya’s dynamism has been filled but personally I wish the Ivory Coast the very worst of luck in their quest for Africa Cup of Nations glory. We need him back.