Writer: Johnny Baguette
Date:Sunday September 23 2007
Saturday was not a day for the faint hearted for followers of Lancashire CCC and Manchester City FC as both clubs astonishing games went to the wire!
Fulham can be a tough nut to crack at home and they came out of the blocks flying. We struggled to contain them until Petrov finally got reward for his efforts to date and the two teams proceeded to slug it out toe to toe.
I agree with Svennis's analysis that our defending could have been far better, but he may well share my view that it was pleasing to see our young team prepared to 'mix it' with the opposition when required as well as scoring more goals. There were plenty of encouraging signs to suggest that our new players are increasingly adapting to the demands of Premier League football. Again, the passing was at times scintillating and defensive lapses did ultimately let us down, but after the shut out's banked so far this season, something had to give at some stage.
Time to shore up again and what better opportunity to do that than with a run of four home league and cup games following some tough assignments on the road?
Norwich, Newcastle, Middlesborough and Birmingham will not relish the prospect of coming to town at this stage of the Sven Revolution as City fans eagerly look forward to each fixture with increasing positivity.
A hell of a lot of hard work has been put in at MCFC and much has been asked of a young side hastily put together so soon after Frank Shinawatra took us into another dimension. But as I said last week we are where we are on merit and the battle at Fulham underlined that.
So now the reward is the chance to consolidate and afford ourselves even more breathing space as the long season continues. Indeed, the next four games could well shape our season.
Essentially, wins in the cup clash against our old pals The Carrot Crunchers and the next league fixture against a certain mickey mouser's Barcodes are paramount. If we can nail those results, then a very good start to the season will be bordering on excellent. Whether or not our former dead ball specialist will be spraying stray passes into the crowd is another matter...
Changes post Fulham? Well, I would still consider giving Schmeichel a break for Hart if Isaksson's latest injury remains and pushing the hungry looking Bianchi and Geovanni into a 4-4-2 formation although I sense a Bristol style line up can be expected for Norwich's visit then reverting back to the Elano 'in the hole' system for Newcastle.
It is now clear to English Football that Manchester City are being shrewdly managed, led by a gaffer who exudes a cool, calm confidence with a respectable public image not seen at our club since David Bernstein was ousted.
Here's to Eastlands roaring and rocking in the coming weeks. Enjoy!
Date:Sunday September 23 2007
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