As Bernardo gave the ball away multiple times in the first half….i felt a slight sense of nervousness linger in my mind…deep down in your heart, you know that something is wrong about us today… we looked flat and disinterested…surprisingly even Pep looked lethargic today.
Gabriel Jesus upfront makes the system rigid and effects our rythm
Gabriel jesus will probably be given a -ve rating by most fans today. He might have missed open goals in the past, but never has he been this bad. There was a moment in the first half, when Kevin De Bruyne tried to play a one two with Sterling and Gabriel Jesus comes in the way and breaks the entire move down. It seemed as if he had forgotten to play as a striker. Even defensively, he was guilty of not tracking back on a few occasions. Imagining he was the trigger for the press, City looked woeful as a pressing unit. This shows that we need everyone to function well, to play at a high level every week. No place for passengers here. This is City, we dont carry anybody. If they are not performing well, we throw them out.
Sterling out left was a great imitation of Gabriel Jesus with a bit of selfishness added
The New Year resolution of Sterling must have been to not pass the ball and dribble past all the players himself to score a goal. He tried to take on one too many dribbles and ignored team-mates in great positions. Sterling was completely playing against Pep’s philosophy and i was surprised that he did not get the hook at half time. Also, i can never seem to understand why sterling wants to shoot from outside the box, everytime he cuts inside onto his right foot. Also, i thought that he should have been better in helping out Ake deal with Saka. He allowed Ake to be left one on one with Saka too often.
Despite an uninspiring performance, the team spirit shined brighter than ever
The celebration of Rodri at the end summed up what that victory meant to us. This was a game where the chips were down and it seemed as if every ounce of effort had been squeezed out of our players through the festive period. We were looking like a runner at the end of a cross-country marathon, completely drained of energy
This is the beauty of this league. It pushes you both mentally and physically every game. City had to look beyond their footballing talents to win this game. We won this game by sheer desire to go that one step further when it looked impossible. This was a game won by the desire of sheer will to conquer destiny.