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Toughen Up, Sharpen Up City

There are plenty of positives to point to at Manchester City six league and cup games into the new season. But the Blackburn experience is a wake up call.

Mark, er, 'Sparky' Hughes talked of his 'high intensity' team being something of a previously unknown quantity for SGE's revitalised squad to deal with and for once, I agree with him. Blackburn's 23 fouls to City's 3 where we saw our captain sent off for two of those 'offences' points not only to pisspoor, inconsistent refereeing but to our team's inability to 'mix it' with the likes of Blackburn.

I see that as cause for concern as did other Blues as the transfer window closed but will stop short of calling for one Joey Barton to come back la,' all is forgiven.

On the evidence we have seen so far I firmly believe we have the resources in the squad to boss midfield and create more chances but that statement counts for nothing unless the engine room start winning, timing tackles and imposing themselves on Premier League sides. Sure, some of the passing and movement of this team has been breathtaking at times this season and we have been very unfortunate to pick up so many cards, but the new players need to get streetwise sharpish because other teams will get after us exactly the same way Blackburn did now they see the way to stop us playing.

The next two months are a real challenge for Svennis and his backroom team to get the side competing strongly at this level. The optimism remains if a little tempered which may not be a bad thing as overly high expectations can be set aside for now.

The start to the season has been bursting with potential and the facts are that we stand 5th in the Premier League on merit having also won a league cup tie that we would surely have lost in previous seasons.

If Sven can get this side into a strongly competitive top gear then Blackburn will visit a much more uncompromising Manchester City on Boxing Day.

On an increasingly positive note, I understand that we could have the exciting Bojinov back in action for the second half of the season and Isaksson back in the sticks soon to take the strain off young Kasper.




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The journalist

Writer: Johnny Baguette Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday September 4 2007

Time: 9:06AM

Your Comments

To weld together a competitive and combative unit that can handle the rigours of an EPL season is not so easy - our imports will not immediately understand the intensity, pace and aggression that is required week and week out, some may not cut it. Blackburn were better in every aspect.
Craig Cain
- i think it will be a good lesson for the team, they have not experiences the best in the league and now the new equivalent to wimbaldon. Blackburn didnt really turn us over, considering how poor Dunne, richards and garrido were, they scored from one set piece. The constant low grade fouls and the 'donkey' work put in by dunn for them kicking evryone, was he on englands books? - Blackburn are below us in terms of quality, yet they make up for it in thuggish tactics which work in the league and thats what svens got to equip us to deal with. perhaps a 442 sometimes or a bianchi petrov elano hamman johno fernades pyramid tactic like a milan style would work
tommytheblue
Sound points, Blues. There is no doubt that the Blackburn result will get some feet back on the ground. The speed with which Frank and Svennis began to rebuild the squad means it's pretty remarkable that we have 9 points out of 15 at this stage. The international break has come at a good time for a regroup. Many's the time we've seen City run into form before a break only to lose momentum two weeks later. Here's to that happening for them lot at Aston Vanilla.
Johnny Baguette
You have had a good start to the season and I think you could do quite well this year once all your new players have settled in. Beating Manure was just the start you needed this year and will drive your club on.
Dicksy
I Think You've Been 'Found Out'...!!
horseworrier
Jb I think Horseworrier is talking about your spelling of Aston Vanilla which of course should be Astun Vanilla, however with a name like Horseworrier he thinks we've been found out!
Buzz Lightyear
We should have made more of the free kicks we had in dangerous positions, Richards can jump like a salmon, yet they all had a pop at goal instead of giving Richards and Dunne a chance. Also Elano freed up when we went 442 but he was brought down when through, fair play to Blackburn they defended really well, but we didn't help ourselves either. Johnson never got into the match and for once the defence went missing on a few occasions trying to play catch up. As they say we will win more than we lose and I agree we miss a bit of muscle in the midfield.
Buzz Lightyear
Great start no need to panic once your new signings bed in you'll be fine.
sw6cfc
wnt be long b4 we get winning again. great game against Blackburn shame we got nothin out of it. we will have a great season
dunne deal
 

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