Manchester City and Pep Guardiola overcome defensive issues in convincing win over Crystal PalaceCat:未分類
How do you resolve a defensive injury crisis? It is a question Pep Guardiola has been grappling with since Aymeric Laportes knee bends during Manchester City win over Brighton in August. But it seems he has his response. If in doubt, just dont utilize any defenders.
Against Crystal Palace on Saturday, with Nicolas Otamendi joining the absentee record and John Stones left the bench, Guardiola set up a centre-back pairing of Fernandinho and Rodri, flanked by Benjamin Mendy and Joao Cancelo, two full-backs famous because of their attacking compared to their protecting.
It seemed daring, particularly for a awkward mission, but what does it matter when his side could control a match as convincingly?
For many their injury issues, for the enforced changes to the backline, Manchester City seldom seemed like conceding. In actuality, the 2-0 scoreline might easily have been much worse. They ought to have added several more although city scored twice in the distance of 93 seconds.
Fernandinho and Rodri did have awkward moments, the latter almost letting Wilfried Zaha a clear run at goal using an abysmal slip midway through the first half, but for the large part they did their jobs with minimal fuss, so helping City keep just their second clean sheet in their last five Premier League games and place the 2-0 loss to Wolves behind them.
Instead of hinder two midfielders presence, City really helped them, their ball-playing capability allowing the side to control the from of Guardiola.
Ilkay Gundogan occupied the holding character but Rodri and Fernandinho were the deep-lying playmakers, completing 87 moves in the Palace half between them and spreading Bernardo Silva from the positions and the play beautifully for Raheem Sterling.
The moment which best illustrated the value of having central midfielders in defence arrived from the build-up Citys second goal, after all, to the edge of his own box and having one impeccable signature, Rodri concurrently dialing Jordan Ayews pass and found the feet of David Silva, that began the counter-attack hed finally finish himself.
There were eye-catching defensive gifts also. After 19 minutes, Fernandinho had Manchester City fans on their feet once he sprinted in the direction of the place to snuff out a Crystal Palace counter-attack at the front of the outside end. With 15 minutes remaining, Rodri was there to earn an essential block .
Rodri and fernandinho were not the ones to create their mark on the match, naturally. In the end, there was Gabriel Jesus, picked ahead justifying his inclusion and of Sergio Aguero. The Brazilians goal, led from the cross of Bernardo Silva was his seventh in his past seven starts and took him to 50 to get City in complete.
The landmark has been attained by him but Agueros status as Guardiolas first-choice striker may be under threat if his form continues then – . City have won five of those matches where Jesus has launched this season, scoring 16 goals in the process.
He should have scored more than once and was a threat here. He made two chances also and had eight shots from total. In addition to this, there was also the energy that forced Crystal Palace defenders into the selfless and errors running that opened up spaces for team-mates.
Guardiolas choices may have been restricted in prison, but he can call on Kevin De Bruyne in midfield after his return from injury.
City learned to deal with no last year, powering their way into the title despite his extended spells out, but its no coincidence that the two Premier League matches are the ones he has not started.
It is a testament to how good hes been lately that he has become critical to them. De Bruyne supplied eight assists in only 531 minutes in the Premier League this season and came into this game having scored two goals, and his influence on the game wasnt insignificant he did not add to those tallies in Selhurst Park.
He had been involved in less or more every attack, popping up in places that were profound to dictate the play and charging into the resistance box in the others. From time to time, he joined both. It had been his run from deep within his own half which put the wheels in motion for the second aim of City.
De Bruyne was unfortunate not to be awarded a penalty in the second half and hit on the inside of the post with a header not long after that, however on this particular occasion he did not need goals or aids to extend a reminder of his importance to this side. The standing ovation was evidence of this.
This triumph cuts the gap at the top to five points, also City will sense a chance to make up a ground before next months clash while Liverpool will be favourites against Manchester United on Sunday. Liverpool have to face Tottenham following United, while Citys next two matches are at home to Aston Villa and Southampton.
Even the Premier League title race is far from over. Manchester Citys performance at Selhurst Park has been a reminder that, regardless of their injuries, and regardless of who plays at this time, this side stay a force to be reckoned with.
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