City continue to defy the odds and remain in the Premier League's fifth place thanks to some terrific defending against Liverpool...
A lot of people in football, and a good degree of Blues, have drifted into expecting far too much from a City side hastily assembled only four to five months ago. I myself was holding out for 40 points by tonight!
That City have been able to trouble the Champions League positions divine right of 'The Big Four' for so long this season is testament to some no less than brilliant work by Svennis and his backroom team.
The fact that there is some disappointment around Sportcity and in the sports media that we did not go for it more readily today gives cause for a reminder or two.
The Liverpool side repelled repeatedly today by a City side absolutely led by Richard Dunne cost a hell of a lot more to assemble, with resources on a different planet to us down the years and have absolutely battered some sides this season. With a bit of luck, and the ball rolling for us on the odd occasion, we could have sneaked a goal.
That we are able to hold one of the Big Four underlines some unbelievable progress under Sven's leadership. We've out-defended the rags and Liverpool and were worth a point at the Gooners. We are slowly becoming a no mug's side. Two league defeats in 15 games now, 36 points by New Year's Eve. I'll settle for that and would have never believed it in the summer, let alone after we were battered at Cheslki.
Above all else, take a look at that starting line up today, especially any visiting sports hack looking to guage the mood. Only 3 of the players starting today were brought in by Sven: Elano, Corluka and Petrov. All the remaining 8 players stumbled along under Stuart Pearce!
One thing's for sure, and I can say this clearly now that we are at the half way stage of the season. From what I've seen across the Premier League and the long haul, if Frank Shinawatra had not bought City and brought in Sven we would be sure fire relegation certs, unable to live with a good number of sides.
In conclusion, we have a team with bags of character to be proud of at long last and the future for MCFC is burning bright.
So see you in 2008 for three tough away assignments to take us into the second half of the campaign. We also have an intriguing transfer window swinging open...
A Happy Blue Year to all Manchester City fans world wide!
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