This statement does not just appear after the previous weekend’s Community Shield match, although that can be used as prime example as to confirm my statement. It first properly came to my attention last year during the first game of the season; Tottenham vs Manchester City. The Manchester club barely crossed the half way line, relaying on Joe Hart to pull out some world class saves from his sleeves (or gloves) to save them a point. The same thing also happened at home to Arsenal and to Manchester United and away to United, Chelsea and Liverpool.
Just as watching those games, it struck me this weekend; it really is bewildering how a team with so many exciting, creative attacking players, can produce so little going forward. It seemed as though Mancini was happy with boring goalless draws against the bigger Premier League clubs.
After the Community Shield match last weekend Mancini told Sky Sports: – It’s important that we continue to play football. We need to stay high up the pitch, not to go deep like we did in the second half.
They did go deeper in the second half indeed, however they looked liked they thoroughly enjoyed lying deep in the first half as well. Creating a bare minimum of chances, yet somehow managing to get a two-goal lead. Impressive indeed. Not many teams can manage to score two goals without attacking. Yet they did. Which could beg the question, how dangerous can Manchester City get if they go out attacking against the bigger teams?
If Milner has a couple of runs forward and into the opposition’s box, something he did so well at Villa. Or if Mario Balotelli manages more than 15(!) touches and five complete passes (!) in a game- his (shocking) stats from the Community match and maybe even manages to put some crosses in the box. A box where there will be some teammates, not just one striker with the rest lurking around the half way line in case there could be a counter attack. Maybe the Manchester City team could be a serious and more worthy contester for the Premiership trophy. Maybe.
It is indeed important, as Mancini stated, not to stop playing football. After all, that is the sport played. It would provide us in the audience with a rather improved aesthetic impression of the Sky Blues.
Quite frankly, with strikers such as Dzeko, Aguero and attacking midfielders such as Silva, Balotelli, Johnson, Touré and Tevez who is still around as well, one should be permitted to expect some flair and fun watching them.
If, just if, Mancini decides to allow these immeasurable attacking forces to unfold just a tad, there is a serious possibility that the “noisy neighbours”- whom earlier were a sophisticated group of people, sitting next door enjoying a bottle of wine, could turn into a group of students raving to dubstep tunes high as kite on ecstasy.
And those sorts of neighbours can be trouble.
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