City lost to Liverpool yesterday, unfortunately. It was one of the best games of the season and both teams confirmed that they deserve to be at the top of the table. Here are some thoughts on the matter…
Yes Luis Suarez is a filthy unapologetic racist who could have been sent off twice over for diving. Yes the Liverpool fanbase is quite often unbearably and mawkishly awful. Yes the television and print media are starting to resemble a gang of self congratulatory inbreds.
But. But, but, but. Could you really, at this point, begrudge Liverpool the title? If General Rodgers manages to take his ragtag army of cretins to the Premier League title then it will be fully deserved. In the first half they found the keys to City’s soul and just hammered us repeatedly. They had enough opportunities to be out of sight within half an hour which rarely happens to City these days. Profligacy in front of goal, some dodgy decision making from Coutinho and Sturridge, and a world class save from Joe Hart kept us in it
There were mitigating factors – Dzeko should have had a penalty, Suarez should have walked etc – but none of that should take away from the hosts who, in that first half, played some of the best football we’ve seen this season.
The Demichelis renaissance is ongoing and Zabaleta is still the best person in the world, but City’s defence showed signs of weakness which are becoming all too familiar, yesterday. Two things in particular stood out;
Firstly, Clichy is not good enough to be our left back. It has been noted many times before that the left back area is an obvious weakness and needs to be addressed. The problem with Clichy is that you can never be confident that he will stand up to be counted at key moments. In the lead up to Sterling’s opener he ran into Suarez, bounced off, and ended up on the floor which sums him up nicely. Glen Johnson had the freedom of the right flank as Liverpool time and again poured forward and attacked City’s biggest defensive vulnerability.
Secondly, Vincent Kompany. He has not been up to his usual high standards recently and was at fault for all of Liverpool’s goals. 99 times out of 100 Kompany would have cleared the ball which lead to Coutinho’s winner into near earth orbit, but instead he sliced it to end a poor afternoon. His marking for Skrtel’s goal was particularly poor as he lost the Slovakian at the front post. We need our inspirational captain to come back to us sooner rather than later.
…Is the best City player of all time. It is getting boring to type it, but he really was magnificent. Again. As with against Hull, Silva looked into the face of adversity and decided to just try and win the game on his own. With Toure’s enforced substitution someone needed to step up in City’s hour of need. More and more regularly, that person is Silva. Scored one, forced a second and came agonisingly close to putting in a third. We are lucky to have him.
With Aguero not up to full fitness, Silva is our best shot at winning the title and he looks like he’s up for the challenge.
Written by Alex Timperley who is on Twitter