MAN CITY 4 – 1 Southampton – PLAYER RATINGS

5 Apr

Hart - For all of Southampton’s elegance in the first half and the way in which their midfield’s effervescence allowed them to control the game, they didn’t actually force Hart into action. Rickie Lambert’s penalty was their only shot on target. When we needed our ‘keeper, however, his punching was strong - 6

Zabaleta - Such a timid penalty to concede but that moment aside, he was relatively assured and emphatic. Shaw stretched the game down the right but his influence decreased as the encounter wore on, and, conversely, Zabaleta started to venture forward frequently in the second half - 6

Kompany - The odd slightly uncertain moment but a largely commanding display. Made a series of key interceptions as the visitors looked to dance through our backline with their intricate play – 7

Demichelis - Conveys an air of composure in everything he does. He may not always be as secure as he likes to make out, but adds a cultured tone to the defence. Anticipated danger well, as always, and produced a number of sliding challenges to prevent the ball down the channel - 7

Kolarov - Suffered an abysmal first half in which he was wasteful in possession and all over the shop defensively, but then fired over a cross in the final minute before the break from which Dzeko nodded home. Enjoyed a more prominent role after the interval, bombing forward at will - 7

Y. Touré - Converted the penalty with customary ease but failed to stamp his authority on proceedings after that. Bypassed time after time in the first half as Southampton swarmed with refined energy, but a couple of surges in the second half hinted at his power. Booked for a dive and then whinged pathetically, at the referee, the opposition and his teammates, when he was fouled late on - 6

Fernandinho - Usually a bundle of enthusiasm in the middle but this was arguably his quietest game of the season. Seemed a yard slower than normal to every loose ball, watched Southampton’s midfielders control the match around him and replaced at the break - 5

Navas - Could have done more in the first half to support Zabaleta with the threat of Shaw, but grew into the game and offered a penetration down the right with his pace and direct approach. End product should have been better - 6

Nasri - Far stronger in possession in tight situations than often given credit for, battling away to bring the ball clear. He was neat and effective enough without being at his best. Scored the second and was involved heavily as we cruised after the break - 7

Silva – I could simply copy and paste what I wrote for him against Hull, Manchester United and Arsenal. His form over the past month since being moved into a central role has been sensational and he was just as majestic again today. It’s a treat to watch him - 9

Džeko - A player of unfathomable contrasts. Created the penalty with a piece of delightful footwork and then in the right place to deliver the third, but also missed a glorious headed opportunity and then blasted horribly over in the second half. Some delicate touches and some abysmal ones - 7


Garcia - The sting had been taken out of Southampton’s endeavours by the two goals just before the break so they posed less of a problem in the second half. Garcia did his job OK - nothing more, nothing less – but picked up his typical booking for a professional foul when slow and out of position - 6

Negredo - The sense of frustration as he squandered two gilt-edged chances was almost tangible. We all know he desperately needs a goal but his confidence is shot and rather than trying to sidestep and glide his way to goal, he might just need to thump one home to end his barren run - 6

Jovetic - A simple finish which will give him confidence as he hopes to feature more often in the run-in - No time to mark

22 Responses to “MAN CITY 4 – 1 Southampton – PLAYER RATINGS”

  1. Rob 05/04/2014 at 6:59 pm #

    It was difficult in the middle for yaya, they’re a very mobile unit. Saying that, for all the possession the saints had, Hart wasn’t troubled in the first half. Pellegrinis change at half time was perfect.
    Zaba needs to stay on his feet, he gives away far too many free kicks. 4
    Negrado, another performance lacking quality. I know he has a cult following but had anyone else missed those chances you’d be slating them. 3
    Special praise for kolorov, has the same work rate as the much overrated zaba but offers a genuine attacking threat. 8
    Dzeko….another game where he showed clever movement, involved in link up play, good touch. He’ll never be classed as clinical but he never hides, and every season he contributes. 8
    Great to see jovetic back, he has an ability to ghost in to dangerous areas un-noticed.

  2. Rob 05/04/2014 at 7:02 pm #

    Not sure if this is a true stat but I found this on twitter….. 21 goals and 15 assists in 41 apps (30 starts) for Dzeko this season for city
    I think that proves he deserves our respect

  3. Glenn kavanagh 05/04/2014 at 8:42 pm #

    Very nice win, I think the peno’s were soft…. We could & should of won by more, they seemed to be very relaxed today, there’ll be no relaxing next week, zaba overrated??, compered to who? Luke shaw?, his stats-his record speaks for itself, granted he mighted be the most elegant of footballers, but he made himself become a very good player by hard graft & having a great attitude so all respect goes to the chap in my eyes, I’m a bit concerned by our midfield- pellers needs to do some thinking there against a dynamic pool.

  4. Kiwi blue 05/04/2014 at 9:53 pm #

    I hope negredo can find his touch and form, everyone is behind him to get back to his best.

    I think that’s what’s most frustrating about dzeko, he’ll miss the sitters and finish some great goals. When he’s leading the line, so often he’ll have 4-5 clear cut chances and only score one. Take nothing away from him as I think he’s world class on his day, I think vfab nailed it that he’ll never be considered clinical.

    Silva.. Merlin.. I can’t describe how thankful I am to have him in our squad. I know yaya gets the plaudits as he’s scoring goals.. But silva for me is close to yaya for player of the season. Especially when you have games like this where yaya disappears, silva is consistently amazing.

    Bring on ‘pool! CTID!

  5. Dj Cena 05/04/2014 at 9:55 pm #

    @Rob I think your ratings are correct! Like it or not Dzeko is good form
    I’ll start him next week again if I was the manager…

  6. BluoonEvo 06/04/2014 at 9:24 am #

    Garcia does a great job for us, he breaks up play and is ALWAYS available for an easy ball when we are in a tricky situation. Zaba should never of given the penalty away. I fear your marks are aimed at populist support rather than reality

  7. @btb42 on Twitter 06/04/2014 at 2:40 pm #

    Dzeko was very good. Won a penalty, scored and played a majestic Silva-like pass to Silva for the crucial second. The question is, start with against Liverpool or start Kun?? Dzeko is not that good at the derbies I think especially against Chelsea and Liverpool

  8. Blue Bullet 06/04/2014 at 3:33 pm #

    Think the mark for Garcia is harsh, he was better than ok. As for Dzeko, apart from the misses his touch and general play was very good yesterday; I try to avoid saying this but I feel personal opinion of players has clouded judgement here a little.

    • mat 06/04/2014 at 5:48 pm #

      Couldn’t agree more, Javi had a big impact. I’d start him against Liverpool

  9. Alphonso 06/04/2014 at 5:22 pm #

    Those with short attention spans should save themselves for more useful activities than reading further. I am known for long boring scripts.

    Fernandinho has been, perhaps, the most significant of the summer additions, because he has both replaced and improved on Gareth Barry, who himself was a stand out player before the years made visible inroads into his effectiveness and he left to join the Toffees. Yes, I know that Barry has had a very good season but that doesn’t alter the situation, Fernandinho was available at a price and the new man knew what he wanted.

    It is probably stating the obvious to say that Fernie is a more complete footballer than Javi Garcia, but there is one area of the game and the field in which Garcia excels, and when tasked with this he is notably more effective than Fernandinho and probablz as good as Barry.

    Garcia is an archetypal DMF in the Claude Makélélé position, but without the Frenchman’s star quality or his inch perfect (usually) tackles. Garcia patrols the field in front of the central defenders and makes their difficult task closer to routine. Now that he has finally settled in we start to see why he was a fans favourite at Benfica and why he is, more often than not, in the Spain squad for important competitions.

    Ferandinho doesn’t do that same sweeping role with the same or even a close level of effectiveness. He has an eye for what is going on ahead of him; he has vision and ambition which Garcia doesn’t allow to compromise his role. Garcia collects the ball, passes it short and safely to a blue shirt and allows the play makers to make the plays. It is no accident that he has one of the best pass completion rates in the PL.

    So why am I writing this? Well, for a start Garcia has taken an enormous amount of stick from large numbers of City fans which I think has been unfair and unreasonable. He was a slow starter but no discernable allowance was made for the new country, culture, language, lifestyle, team, colleagues and league. VfaB was foremost amongst the doubters to a degree that he went beyond insulting to being gratuitously offensive on one occasion, and in doing so raised my usual placid temprement level to `volcanic.´ I raise this not to fight an old battle with Vfab, who I consider writes a well informed blog, but to provide a little context to what I am about to write.

    ´Quote: The sting had been taken out of Southampton’s endeavours by the two goals just before the break so they posed less of a problem in the second half. Garcia did his job OK – nothing more, nothing less – but picked up his typical booking for a professional foul when slow and out of position – 6`

    Sorry Pal, we were a mess in the first half. The substitution which saw Garcia come on was an important part of remedying the problem caused by both Fernie and YaYa getting too far forward so, that when we were out of possession, the gap between the two City lines was tailor made for the Saints midfielders to swarm into.

    Against Pool this is likely to be just as big a problem, but with worse consequences, because they have strikers who can make an opponent pay big time. They use speed and aggression, a lot of aggression, to close down opponents, bully possession, and then pump it forward for Sturridge and Suarez to run onto. Therefore we have to defend better than we did against Saints to come awaz with anz points from Anfield.

    There is a strong case for starting with Garcia, Fernandinho and Yaya; a nominal 3 man mid field, allowing the big man freedom to get forward when we have possession, leaving the disciplined Garcia in the defensive role and with Fernandinho providing the engine room. Pellegrini will not be keen, he likes to fall back on this later in a game, but later in this particular game may be too late.

    If we start the game with Garcia, Yaya and Fernandinho, then a playmaker has to be sacrificed. Dzeko is an asset but is often too laid back to lead the line on his own against the likes of Skrtel and Co, so why not start the Beast, Naz and Merlin in a 433?

    Yaya gets forward as usual when we are in possession and we stay strong at the back. Kun and Edin are available when Negredo has run himself ragged. Zeus can bring something different and so can JAmes Milner and Jovetic.

    A loss at Anfield doesn’t mean that the fat lady starts singing, neither does a win for City, but a win or a draw makes us just a little more likely to win the PL trophy does it not? Going away from home setting up to make it a little bit harder for two of the most prolific strikers in the league and a little bit easier for our admirable centre halves isn`t a crime is it? Playing with a monster of a DMF who has dominated midfields against some of the best sides in Europe and scored 21 times this season, behind the likes of Silva, Nasri and (perm any one from Negredo, Aguero or Dzeko) isn`t abandoning attacking principles either is it?

    Alphie Izzett

    • Alphonso 06/04/2014 at 5:27 pm #

      Apologies for all of the Z´s in the above.
      I am in Crete using a Greek Keyboard!

      • @btb42 on Twitter 08/04/2014 at 8:03 pm #

        Have a great time when you are there! Crete is beautiful just like many greek places.

    • Blue Bullet 06/04/2014 at 5:32 pm #

      no ;)

    • mat 06/04/2014 at 5:53 pm #

      Agree with all of that. Playing with the two more defensive minded midfielders unshackles Yaya, and that spells trouble for Liverpool

    • Siamack 06/04/2014 at 9:02 pm #

      For once, I totally agree with 100% to the letter, both on the Garcia effect in the second half and on starting Garcia, Freni and Yaya for Liverpool game. Very well said in my oponion

  10. Glenn kavanagh 06/04/2014 at 6:07 pm #

    Good man Alphonso, I like the way you put that together Mr, a very well written & thoughtful piece… Top marks to you’ I think that we are going to have a serious problem next week if we don’t box clever around the middle of the green, I agree with you about garcia, I like the bloke… Tidy & unfussy, he can play a big roll for us, he was super against Munich so he won’t be intimidated, I like demich too but my hair is going white thinking of him with Liverpool’s front four, jayus a week to go…. I need to lie down.

  11. Crispy 06/04/2014 at 10:12 pm #

    So, who thinks we’ll come away from Anfield with anything? If we play usual formation and YaYa is not in the mood/on his game/can’t be fucked – we’re, well, fucked.

    • Blue Bullet 07/04/2014 at 11:22 am #

      Yaya is a big game player as we know and it wouldn’t be a shock to see him have a worldy.

      Would expect 5 in midfield and agree Garcia with fernandinho and Yaya is a good way to go. To answer your question I think we have every chance and would edge towards a draw, but you don’t need me to tell you that this game could be anything.

  12. muzz 07/04/2014 at 10:23 pm #

    if he is going with the same formation as southampton then id want milner in for navas. jesus incredibly frustrating on saturday but successful assist for jovetic goal will mask some of that

    not averse to adding javi into midfield but that would mean silva having to be put back mostly on the wings

    up the blues!

  13. Trevor Brierley 08/04/2014 at 3:19 pm #

    I predict a draw at Liverpool (and Everton) but I think we’ll lose if we don’t keep it tight early on. Sluggish starts have cost us – remember Bayern Munich at home – we’d have finished top of the group but for that 7th minute goal!

    Keep their strikers quiet and we’ll be fine.

    And if my maths are right win the other five matches, keep the superior goal difference, and no-one can catch us on 87 points!

  14. Roggie123 09/04/2014 at 5:43 pm #

    Interesting article on Garcia, Alphie. But once again you have tried to pull the wool over everyone’s eyes! Garcia is not more often than not in the Spanish squad (unless you mean 36 players!). He has played 2 games for Spain, one of those was a friendly for 22 minutes. He wasn’t good enough for Real and played most of his games in their B team. Sure he can pass, he’s a product of the Real system, but he can’t run and nobody can change his slow speed and his inability to tackle. That is why Real got rid of him! Yet you think he is good enough for Man.City – sorry I completely disagree. If City are going to do well in Champions league in the future Garcia has to go at the end of this season.

    As for last sat. game the change in the 2nd half was not due to Garcia it was because Pelli changed from 4-1-1-3-1 to 4-5-1. Oh, you obviously didn’t notice there were 5 in midfield?? Pelli didn’t need to chase the game and as they were 2 goals up and had been overrun in the first half he sensibly changed it. In no way was it due to Garcia coming on! Sorry you got it wrong again in your promotion of Garcia. Are you Spanish by any chance???

  15. Roggie123 09/04/2014 at 5:52 pm #

    So I agree with Vfab, Garcia ‘did his job – no more no less’ passing the ball left and right no more than 10 yards. Next time Garcia plays count the no of balls he passes forward and over 5 yards. You will be amazed. Also count the number of tackles he makes in his defensive role.To compare him with Ferny or Barry is an insult to both players. Your phrase ‘passes it short and safely to a blue shirt’ is all he does and that isn’t good enough for a Man. City player.

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