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Skoorb On The Spot - City 4 Hull 1
01 December 2015 22:11 Post ID: #560017
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Manchester City slipped into the semi-finals of the Capital One Cup with a solid 4 -1 victory over promotion chasing Hull City. Hull set out their stall early with massed ranks barely stepping over the half way line. City, with the incomparable talent of David Silva starting a game for the first time in nearly two months, enjoyed masses of possession in the early stages as they worked hard to break down a stubborn Hull side. The pattern looked like it was being set for a frustrating night as the Hull game plan was clearly based on nicking a goal from a counter attack or set piece as City pressed them. The City players were demonstrating the same verve and vim that was evident against Southampton at the weekend with Delph working hard alongside Fernandinho to shield the partnership of Otamendi and Mangala. On eleven minutes Steve Bruce's game plan had to be revised when it was Delph's speed and diligence inside the Hull half of the pitch that won the ball back and allowed him to quickly play the ball forward to the ever available De Bruyne on the edge of the Hull 18 yard box. He turned and unleashed a long range effort which smacked off the post and back across the area towards Bony who coolly slotted the ball home under pressure. This naturally forced Hull to come out of their shell and they started to threaten but City held firm to end the half with a their lead intact. What a joy it was to see the maestro that is David Silva back in action - his movement, control and vision are outstanding and he ended the half with a 91% pass completion rate. There were no changes at half time as City got back into their stride and Hull tried to play with greater ambition. Naves was replaced by Sterling just after the hour mark and this seemed to loosen things up for City as Hull tired chasing the shadows that were KDB, Silva and Sterling. Iheanacho came on for Bony and as scintillating break just ten minutes later delivered a pass into the path of Sterling on the left - his first time cross was perfectly met by Iheanacho as he squeezed between two Hull defenders inside the six yard area to slot home. Two minutes later and De Bruyne chased an apparent lost cause into the Hull penalty area to capitalise on a weak defensive header and nick the ball beyond the helpless Hull keeper, Jakupovic. KDB stepped up again a few minutes later to put the ball in from a free kick on the edge of the Hull box. Two assists dan two goals in one game. What a waste of money. I can see now what Moaninho wanted to get shot of him :68:

The only blot on the copy book was the lack of a clean sheet when they allowed Robertson to score for the away side - Mike Jones the referee deciding that they needed some consolation as he opted not to give a clear foul against Iheanacho in the build up. But hey ho, no sour grapes, City are in the semi finals of the Capital One Cup and secured another morale boosting victory. Buoyed by the return of the talismanic Silva, the return of both Aguero and Bony and the emergence of Delph as a genuine contender for a starting place in a midfield which bristled with pace and intention Manuel Pellegrini enters the Christmas fixture period with his tactical options expanded. Couple this with the solidity that Otamendi provides - he made some outstanding interventions - the manager will feel that he is getting close to being able to deliver success again to the only top flight side still engaged in the hunt for four trophies.
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01 December 2015 22:45 Post ID: #560018 - in reply to #560017
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Good write up Skoorb.

We took our time to put on the afterburners but we got there in the end. Silva is sexy.
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01 December 2015 23:26 Post ID: #560021 - in reply to #560017
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Hull didn't really threaten us. I honestly felt that the eventual scoreline flattered the performance, or am I being too harsh?
Someone stood up in front of me for Nacho's goal, and my initial thought was an own goal, on seeing the first defender's reaction - but what a super steal and strike it was!
De Bruyne showed you get your reward if you keep on chasing, and that free kick was just sublime - you just knew it was on when given.
Silva was a joy to watch indeed, and I thought Otamendi put in a couple of superb challenges, and, yes, I was surprised a free kick wasn't given when Nacho was pulled down in the build up to Hull's consolation.
The semis look as though the final four could be interesting - all to play for.

Edited by Colin Is The King 1/12/2015 23:27
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02 December 2015 05:41 Post ID: #560026 - in reply to #560017
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A very good summary Skoorb, until our second I had that very uncomfortable feeling about an 89 min goal for Hull, but all ended well.
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02 December 2015 07:38 Post ID: #560033 - in reply to #560017
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Semi Finals of the League Cup for the 4th time in 7 seven seasons.

It was looking a bit tight - always on a tightrope at 1 - 0 but credit to Pellegrini. He made the changes and got the rewards.

Great to see Silva back to his string-pulling best. I fear for his ankles though against Leslie Hughes's midfield cloggers at the weekend.

Iheanacho took his goal superbly - he did what the best strikers do, he gambled, made the near post run and met the cross brilliantly. Nine times out of ten the defender gets a toe on the ball and it's off for a corner or the cross isn't delivered as accurately. That's the sort of run Goater used to make so often and he got loads of goals - gives the wingers the confidence that if they get to the line and get a cross in it won't be wasted - works both ways :hat off:

Otamendi was outstanding I thought. Not just for his interventions but for the quality and pace with which he delivers his forward passes. Best I have seen from a City CB for quite some time, including Kompany. They breach the midfield shield and get the ball to Silva etc in the area between the defence and midfield allowing the receiver to often turn and play towards the opposition defenders. :clap:
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02 December 2015 08:56 Post ID: #560036 - in reply to #560017
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Correction :oops:

Having now seen the highlights in glorious HD rather than the rather poor stream (coupled with the distraction of a FaceTime call from one of my offspring) I should make a correction - it was Fernandinho not Delph who reacted quickly in midfield to collect the ball and play it swiftly forward to KDB to turn and strike the post before the first goal. Hats off again to Bony steering the ball in through a narrowing gap between the defender d the post :hat off:

But it was Delph whose slid rule pass into Sterling's path allowed him to deliver such a super cross for Iheanacho on the end of :clap:

Delph also made a couple of break into the area to get on the end of passes from Silva - he doesn't look out of place in this squad at all and I am pleased to say he is changing my mind about him. I did have reservations that he might just be makeweight homegrown but he adds some energy and steel in midfield :yup:
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02 December 2015 09:12 Post ID: #560038 - in reply to #560017
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I've been very impressed with him too, some great driving runs from midfield but indecisive at the crucial moment, I guess that indecision could be put down to teething problems though. Surprised by how well he's done and looking forward to seeing him continue to improve as he settles in.
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02 December 2015 09:16 Post ID: #560040 - in reply to #560017
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Quotes

Pellegrini

"The most important thing was to qualify for the semi-final but after that it was important for David Silva to have 80 minutes after a long injury.
"It was important for Bony to have 65 minutes after a muscle injury and for Kelechi, a young player, to score.

Bruce

"Defensively, apart from the goal, I can't remember them creating a chance in the first half even though they had huge possession."

Buzz list of attempts in first half after the goal.(stats courtesy of www.bbc.co.uk/football)

19:09 Attempt missed. Fabian Delph (Manchester City) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the right is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by David Silva.

21:52 Attempt blocked. David Silva (Manchester City) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Jesús Navas.

30:24 Attempt saved. Wilfried Bony (Manchester City) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Fernandinho.
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02 December 2015 09:19 Post ID: #560042 - in reply to #560017
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I noticed that David Silva was wearing boots that gave his ankles either protection or designed to support the ankles, if so a good move by City to protect their prized asset.

Some fabulous passes and you could visibly see that De Bruyne was enjoying playing with DS21.

an excellent read Skoorb. :clap: :clap: :clap:
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02 December 2015 09:24 Post ID: #560044 - in reply to #560042
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Your offspring have not been brought up properly if they interrupt you when City are playing.
:grin:

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02 December 2015 15:19 Post ID: #560057 - in reply to #560044
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Rising - 2/12/2015 09:24


Your offspring have not been brought up properly if they interrupt you when City are playing.
:grin:



I know, very embarrassing :blush:

His Christmas present list could well be reviewed ;-)
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