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Everton Wake Up Call

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!

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The journalist

Writer: Johnny Baguette Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Sunday January 13 2008

Time: 3:58PM

Your Comments

I think the match with Liverpool at the end of the season would determine who is the team from them that will take fourth place, What a game it will be.
city 81
For that to happen we need goals, city 81. We cannot afford to dominate as we did in the second half yesterday without making something happen.
Johnny Baguette
JB, Did you know we have score till now 29 goal such as the number of goals we have score in all games in last season.
city 81
There is something strange doing Eriksson when make Change, he allow striker & outside midfielder & After ten minutes he make opposite!!, This is repeated in many games .
city 81
i was suprised by how poor you were to be honest, Elano really dissapointed me to be honest. We were missing our two first choice strikers, aswell as pienaar, osman and yobo. But you struggled to create a chance until late on. WHy do you start games so defensivly? Only ventured into our half after we scored. We were there for the taking yesterday with anichebe up front alone and a makeshift midfield.
I'd say the reason for the cageyness is that this is very much a team still in the making. Still finding it's feet, EvertonMike. Winter, the pace, the intensity of the Premier League and number of games in a short period seems to have taken it's toll on our newer players. I think also the team has struggled to maintain the high level of performance reached in the autumn. When this side get's going however, it's terrific to watch. If results go for us and confidence reasserts itself, who knows with a new striker up front and Castillo settled you will meet a different proposition at Eastlands late February. Btw, results seem to going for Villa, Everton and City today. If Blackburn lose or draw, we'll have a 5 point cushion for Europe!
Johnny Baguette
Good point city 81. Am I asking too much of our squad? Blues are divided right now over whether we should not be greedy and accept what we have so far and settle for it or like me, aim to push for more. The MUEN message boards are a good indicator of the feeling.
Johnny Baguette
Forget that Euro comment. Blackburn have stole in at that death to see of Bolton who are now in deep *****e so the pressure for European qualification intensifies.
Johnny Baguette
The game was a close & who score first he win in the game .
city 81
I mean the game with Everton.
city 81
maybe city 81, but from where i was sat it appeared your team didn't really want to score until they went behind. For both of us from here a good run to the end qwill see 4th, but the way the league is we could end up as low as 10th.
When Everton have Yobo / Pienaar / Yakubu / Fernandes playing against City in Late Feb - City Fans will see a Different Everton side - I Truly Believe 4th Spot is Ours for the taking ! Carsley will sit deep and Our 4 attacking midfielders and Yakubu Will Torture City. (Arteta / Fernandes / Cahill / Pienaar).
EvertonMike, Both team play 451, What can the a players do in this Jostle and few opportunities, This was the role of coach to change the situation not the players .
city 81
Admirable belief, ToffeeFan1, but with Yakubu and Pienaar on board you couldn't beat Oldham. We'll see you at Fortress Eastlands!
Johnny Baguette
your problem yesterday was turning possession into chances let alone goals!
we'll have osman, baines and aj too toffeefan. But it will be a different game, city are always better at home. But we need the practise playing at that ground ready for the UEFA cup final.
City 81, just because the teams were playign 4-5-1 doesn't neccersarily mean it will be a jostle. Players like elano, petrov and that new little striker you have whos name i forget, should eb able to get space away from players like mcfaggot, ****vlle and the bald wonder carsley. Who are just not very good at football
CLUNK you know what that was the wheels coming off hee hee but never mind at least your team plays in the prema nd will be there next season
ozanne park rangers
Well, ozanne park rangers, there's been a whole raft of sports hacks and a good degree of Ingurland supporters hanging on all season desperate for City to fall down the table, but this team keep coming back just as soon as the experts put them down as underdogs or also rans. Long may it continue! As for Everton being this amazing Europe conquering team, I just don't see it. Level pegging with a young team hastily thrown together at the start of the season right now. Seven starting yesterday were either Academy lads or non achievers under Stuart Pearce. Surely you should have thrashed us then??
Johnny Baguette
without 7 of our best players? I highly doubt any team in the league would thrash any other team in the leageu(derby aside) with 7 first team regulars missing.
I'd say the team we put out yesterday probably costs less than yours to be honest! (0 + 0.2 + 1.25+ 2 + 2 + 3 + 0 + 4 + 4 + 0 +2 = 18.5 million for the starting 11)
Yes, EvertonMike, but you know full well that Cahill and Arteta alone are worth more than that really. We at villa are loving this season, you lot should be too, no need to fight now, is there?
I wonder what the situation will be regarding the Champions league next season if Liverpool finish 8th and win the Champions League this year!
Liverpool get in and 4th spot doesn't. Liverpool won't win the champions league though.
ronin Looks like he's ours!!
Boro 01
EvertonMike, Please, Do not forget we make three changes in second half, It was as follows 4+4+3 Out , 2+4+1.25 Inter , you will see we have in last half hour less cost than you !!! This was analyses of Economic men for the match. :)
city 81
It sounds like we could be playing you at the right time. Most of our players are getting fit now so wednesday should be a good game. We are so much better away from home.
I wouldn't class it as fighting carlosio lol, him saying we should of thrashed them with the team we had to field is ridiculas, and price of player seemed the only way where people opinion don't decide, just fact. As long as liverpool miss out, i'm happy. Being able to sing rafael beneathus is great.
Wrong end of the stick, EvertonMike. I was implying that if you are on the way to winning the UEFA Cup, then City, fielding seven starters from the hopeless Pearce era should really have been blown away all things considered. Anyway, by the time we meet again next month, things could be very different for both of us, and Villa too! Delighted also to see Liverpool forced to slug it out with us. Good luck until late Feb!
Johnny Baguette
A point i'm trying to make is when a team can play Howard, neville, yobo, lescott, baines, fernandes, arteta, cahill, pienaar yakubu and andy johnson, when we are stuck having to play howard, hibbert, jagielka, lescott, valente, carsley, neville, arteta, cahill, mcfadden anichebe, is goiung to be a totaly different proposition
yep of you heard the clunk of the whell falling off then get out put it back on and get moving again. although everton aren't too bad better than losing to derby
ozanne park rangers
dont worry, its only on goal difference!!!
Pressures on City for the first time this season, pompeycarpet. Be intriguing to see how the team respond to being slated by Sven and Frank post Everton.
Johnny Baguette

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