Trending now:   Liverpool  •  Manchester United  •  Arsenal  •  Chelsea  •  Barcelona  •  Tottenham Hotspur  •  Bayern München  •  Manchester City  •  Real Madrid  •  VfL Wolfsburg

Manchester City

Teams /  England  / Manchester City 
Manchester City have 2,881 Fans
 
 
 
 
 
Premier League chalkboard analysis
Michael Cox - 4 years ago

Last week, we looked at how Birmingham's pressing of Manchester City's centre-backs at goal-kicks forced Joe Hart to kick the ball long, losing possession on every occasion. Against Fulham, the situation was changed with the introduction of Jô. He offered more of an aerial presence in the City attack, despite being positioned on the left wing. The majority of Hart's kicks were sent towards the left-hand side, where six of the long balls were won by the Brazilian striker. This chalkboard compares Hart's distribution in the Birmingham game to the Fulham game, showing how the presence of Jô helps City win possession high up the pitch.

The Arsenal legend Robert Pires made his return to English football after four years away in Aston Villa's 2-0 defeat at Ewood Park on Sunday. He replaced Stephen Ireland, who has failed to make an impact since his summer move from Manchester City, in a central midfield position, a zone where Villa have injury problems with Nigel Reo-Coker and Stilian Petrov both out. Ireland was on the pitch for 68 minutes, Pires for just 22 – but they completed the same number of passes, 17.

With Arsenal's second-half capitulation against Tottenham Hotspur, Bacary Sagna's good performance against Gareth Bale was widely overlooked. Sagna's strategy was to stick tight to the Welshman, getting tackles in as soon as possible and denying Tottenham the opportunity to play the ball into Bale's feet. Presumably this approach is only possible if the full-back is confident he can match Bale's pace if Spurs look to play balls in behind for him to run on to, but it worked for Sagna – despite an early booking for a mistimed tackle, he made nine out of nine successful challenges. Bale did end up on the scoresheet, but in an inside-right position, and Sagna was not culpable.

The red cards shown to Antolín Alcaraz and Hugo Rodallega in Wigan's trip to Old Trafford meant Manchester United's full-backs were afforded plenty of room as they enjoyed total domination in the final minutes of their 2-0 win. One of the main features in the final half hour was the excellent crossing of the Brazilian right-back Rafael da Silva. As well as providing an assist for Javier Hernández's header, he sent in another superb cross that Hernández could not take advantage of, while Wayne Rooney headed a simple chance over after meeting Rafael's centre. With Nani showing great crossing ability so far this season (he has contributed seven assists, the majority from the right), Sir Alex Ferguson may be on the way to building a right-wing to match the Gary Neville–David Beckham partnership in terms of crossing ability.

Now make your own chalkboards here

Michael Cox is editor of zonalmarking.net. You can also follow zonalmarking on Twitter

This is not a news report and may contain views expressed by the author which are not supported by GNM.

Share your thoughts

Latest News, Blogs & Podcasts

Newspapers
 
Blogs
 
Podcasts
 
The reigning Premier League champions struggled in the Ivory Coast international midfielder's absence in January and February but the pair both look tired, says the manager
Manchester City - 2 hours ago
Diego Simeone is waiting to take the Manchester City job – plus the other top stories from the papers.
MCFC News - 2 hours ago
Following a most-welcome, pressure-alleviating victory over Nigel Pearson’s Leicester City side last night at the Etihad Stadium, here’s the pick of the post-match reaction doing the media rounds  ...
Manchester City - 3 hours ago
Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini felt he needed to "refresh the team" and leave out captain Vincent Kompany for his side's much-needed win against
Two second half goals from David Silva and James Milner lead Manchester City past Leicester for a much need three points.
Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini says Vincent Kompany was dropped to refresh the team after two difficult games.
The ESPN FC crew discuss Manuel Pellegrini's decision to leave Vincent Kompany out of the starting XI and whether he was dropped or rested for Manchester City's victory over Leicester.
Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini says Vincent Kompany was dropped for the win over Leicester to freshen up the side.
The Premier League champions' captain has come under scrutiny after a series of below-par performances and had to settle for a place on the bench against Leicester City
Manchester City - 11 hours ago
Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini felt he needed to "refresh the team" and leave out captain Vincent Kompany for his side's much-needed win against
ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE: James Milner (88') Manchester City 2-0 Leicester CIty  ...
• Captain was a substitute for the 2-1 win over Leicester• ‘It was important to refresh the team mentally and physically’• David Silva pieces together victory over Leicester Manuel Pellegrin ...
ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE: James Milner (88') Manchester City 2-0 Leicester CIty  ...
Manchester City 2 Leicester City 0: Goals from David Silva and James Milner give champions a vital win as Vincent Kompany is dropped
MCFC News - 12 hours ago
Three points and a clean sheet – just what the doctor ordered, says Manuel Pellegrini.
Chilean manager shows ruthless side to stop the rot but revamped Manchester City team still struggle in win over bottom-placed Leicester CityThese are curious times at Manchester City. The manager’s ...
ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE: David Silva (45'+2) Manchester City 1-0 Leicester City  ...
It was a scruffy performance at times, with Vincent Kompany removed from the team, an undistinguished first start for Wilfried Bony and the clear sense that something is still not right. Yet, for Manc ...
Manchester City - 12 hours ago
David Silva and James Milner struck late in each half as under-fire reigning champions Manchester City grabbed a scrappy but much-needed 2-0 win over Leicester
ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE: James Milner (88') Manchester City 2-0 Leicester CIty

Latest Photo Galleries

4 years ago
Our award-winning photographer Tom Jenkins is at the game to bring you all the action from the first Manchester derby of the season
4 years ago
All the best images from tonight's Europa League matches featuring Liverpool and Manchester City
4 years ago
Tom Jenkins's best pictures from today's clash at Eastlands
   
Kick4Life - changing lives through football