Writer: Johnny Baguette
Date:Sunday January 13 2008
A disappointing display at Everton has seen City drop to 7th place in the Premier League on goal difference. Although rarely beaten or outplayed this season, the fact is we have just not been scoring enough goals to see teams off and our European competition rivals have slowly caught us up. However, none of us were under any illusion that the winter month's would prove tough going for our relatively small and young squad who have surpassed all expectations to date.
Everton away was always going to be a tight encounter and a dogged, hardworking 'close them down' style home display saw City struggle to assert themselves and consequently, unable to create chances. Frustrating of course, but we have a golden opportunity to re-address Everton's defence next month following the massive clashes with The Gooners and The rags.
Before then, January now presents us with three crucial fixtures which could define where our season ends up. The West Ham mini-series/Fortress Eastlands residency are now both must win games and hapless Derby away gives us another chance to shed that old 'Typical City' albatross. That's something this side has regularly achieved this season, winning when in previous season's we would have lost.
We are certainly more than capable of winning all three games but will only do so if the side displays a cutting edge and will to compete when the tackles are flying in. The return of Michael Johnson cannot come quick enough.
The Everton reality check has also seen this correspondent swing from suggesting we should hold out for the return of Bojinov up front to asking Frank to seriously dish some wedge out. And quickly. Rumours are emerging on the continent that City could be about to secure a big money striker signing any day now. Ajax's Taggart coveted Klaas Jan Huntelaar has been mentioned in dispatches and that is the type of signature we clearly need. That we have slipped out of the top six for the first time because of goal difference means we cannot afford to be in the same scenario by the end of April.
A hell of a lot of hard work, indeed miracle work has been put in for City to be in this position by mid January. It's down to everyone associated with the club to take our game up yet another notch both on and off the pitch in order to ensure we get just reward for all our efforts this season.
Come On City!
Date:Sunday January 13 2008
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