Writer: Johnny Baguette
Date:Thursday September 15 2011
City have taken their bow in Europe and will be under no illusions now over the scale of the Champions League task that faces them. Post match reaction to the Napoli draw...
'We were so nervous. It is normal. After many years we play our first game in the Champions League. The first game is always difficult and it was difficult to play against Napoli because they defend really well and when they're on the counter attack they're very dangerous. We conceded a goal because for 10 minutes in the second half we played so-so. But after that we played well, I'm happy. We wanted to win but the Champions League is hard. For us it was important to start well.
'We played one touch too many in the first half, for me. When we had a chance, one touch more. That iss all it is. I enjoyed this game.
'We will win in Munich next game.'
'The first game is out of the way now and we can focus on getting out of the group.
From then on we have as much of a chance as everyone else. I don't think we played in a bad way. We were 1-0 down against a good, strong Italian team and we came back to 1-1 and still had chances to score.
'If you play in the Champions League people expect you to win at home but I guess the trick is to put yourself back into situations where you put pressure on yourselves to win games.'
'We started too anxious and were fortunate not to concede in the first half, but the tension left and we played the way we know how, probably deserving a second goal. We started to get cocky and tried to shoot from 30 metres, that was the real regret.
'If you don't take your chances in a stadium like this, then you can risk defeat, as we did with free kicks and giving the ball away in midfield. We are perfectionists and always want to control the tempo, which we didn't do in the first half.'
In The VMC Forum:
'I thought coming from behind showed character and not losing your first game. There were a lot of nervous faces out there in light blue.'
'I thought we played a bit frazzled and gave up some back breaks that you do not normally see. Having said that we had ample opportunity to score a few goals and we plain and simple just didn't finish. Possession was high in our favor, close to 70%. I suspect we'll settle down going forward.'
'We overplayed too much (if that makes sense), particularly Nasri. Silva and Aguero were both tamed quite effectively. This Napoli side are a pretty decent team so I'm not overly concerned.'
'Napoli defended superbly, and attacked very efficiently. Was also expecting more play acting from them although they did enjoy the odd commando roll.'
'Fascinating game - Napoli played the classic counter attack tactics.
I think we will fair a lot better away from home in this league.'
'To be honest, I think a lot of premiership managers will have watched that tonight and thought to themselves 'aha! that's how you play City!', as Napoli showed that surrounding Silva and Aguero prevents them from doing any damage - they might be able to retain the ball in tight spots, but can't make the telling pass or get the shots in.'
'Outstanding ref let the game flow.
Thought we really missed Nige tonight. Our defence looked shaky when they were running at us full speed. Needed a killer tackle now and then to bully them like the thug Keane used to do in Europe.'
Date:Thursday September 15 2011
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