Manchester City - City Show No Passion As Pompey Win V-Day Battle!
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Portsmouth 2 - Manchester City 0

Fratton Park

Saturday February 14, 2009, 3.00pm

Attendance: 20,018

City Show No Passion As Pompey Win V-Day Battle!

Glen Johnson and Hermann Hreidarsson capitalized on City`s poor away form to secure a much needed win which leaves City still wondering how to win away.

The game started nervously for City and within eight minutes Given was called into action. A corner for Portsmouth fell to Pennant, whose run was stopped by Zabaleta, however the ball spun to Crouch, but his shot flew straight at Given. The hosts then had another chance within a minute. Dave Nugent broke into the box and got his shot away from a tight angle but failed to hit the target.

City just didn`t seem up for the battle, although Bellamy was a persistent threat weaving in and out of the Pompey defence and generally looking lively. It was Elano who managed to get the first real shot off for City on the 21st minute. The Brazilian picked the ball up from just outside the penalty box, and he rifled the ball over the bar.

Halfway through the first half and it was still Portsmouth who looked the better. Nugent broke through again, this time having a better opportunity. His shot this time tested the Irish International Given, who managed to get his fingers to the ball and the chance was gone. Peter Crouch was also denied this time by Vincent Kompany`s challenge from inside the box. City did have a half chance afterwards when Onuoha put a header from a City free-kick straight into the arms of David James.

The Hosts then began to look nervy. With all their chances they had failed to break the deadlock, and doubt began to enter the minds of the Pompey players. City had their best chance before the break when Elano cut in from the right and fired towards goal, but yet again James saved easily. Elano then had a free-kick which was disappointing and yet again James gathered easily.

Halftime: Portsmouth 0 Manchester City 0

The second half started in the same fashion as the first. Glen Johnson had the first chance, when he managed to wriggle into enough space to drill a low shot that Given claimed comfortably. It took only till the 53rd minute for Nugent to spurn the best chance of the game. After beating the off-side trap, The Englishmen was one-on-one with Given but failed to find his shooting boots as he rolled the ball past the post.

I heard Hughes talking about Patience, but City looked content to just sit and ride their luck. City did manage another chance though when Craig Bellamy fired the ball over after a cute knock down by Stephen Ireland, But Portsmouth always looked comfortable and surely it was only a matter of time before they broke the deadlock.

In fact it only took minutes before the home side took the lead. Glen Johnson cut in from the right and breezed past Bridge, who forced Given to produce a great save, but the ball came right back to the right-back, and he simply placed the ball past the City keeper.

Surely this would bring City to life? If only! It took only 5 minutes for Portsmouth to double their lead. A corner swung in from the far side was met by the tall Hermann Hreidarsson, who powered a bullet of a header past the despairing Given.

Sub Ched Evans forced James into a world-class save at the end, but Portsmouth kept their clean sheet, and won the game. As for City fans, I`m sure there be feeling the frustration and anger I feel, when they board the bus for the long trip back home.

Final Score: Portsmouth 2 Manchester City 0.

Player Ratings


Given - 7

- Thaibluefan


Bridge had a nightmare. Somebody should tell him that strikers are the ones who dive, not full backs (3)

- Sindbad


Onohua - 6



Kompany was halfway decent but is better suited to midfield. We need Dunney back. (6)



Logan - 4

- MCFC_Goatboy


Ireland 3


De Jong

De Jong was lost in a game where the balls were played over his head all the time. And when he got the ball he almost always passed it backwards (4)



Zabaleta 6



Robinho never got going at all but was still the only person likely of finding some magic from somewhere. Hughes should not have brought him off. When he did you could see the relief in the Pompey players and they had an extra yard's pace from then on (4)



Elano - 6 - played some good balls and along with Ireland looked our most likely source for goals. Playing with more confidence and his corners are looking better. Not enough support up front as Bellamy did nothing.



Bellamy - 4 - ineffective up there by himself most of the time, there was not enough attacking impetus from the supporting cast. One semi-decent that he blazed over. Not the thorn in the side that he could be.



Caicedo 5

- MCFC_Goatboy


Evans 6

- MCFC_Goatboy

Manager Rating

Hughes - 5 (players were pathetic today and he had no idea how to respond)


Hughes - 7 (played his best team - made the right changes - players were just poor today.

- MCFC_Goatboy

Hughes 3

Just in case anyone thinks I think he can do no wrong

- bluescot

Player Ratings

Thank you to everyone who rated players in the City Forum. If you would like to be apart of the player ratings simply write ur comments in the "Are They Fit To Wear The Shirt" thread, which appears every match morning.

The journalist

Writer: amcollinz Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Saturday February 14 2009

Time: 6:40PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
From the 1st whistle we were shaky and our only tactic was a long balls to super short bellamy. Other than that i havent a clue what city were trying to do.It was heart breaking watching that crap. I didnt expect to win this game or any game away, especially the next games against liverpool, copenhagean and west ham. Villa will be tough at easlands to get 3 points. So im bracing myself for the evitable bad form to continue and for city to be in the thick of a relegation scrap. We havent beaten the bottom teams, any team in poor form that hasnt won in ages (west brom, stoke, pompey, bolton) always beat us and our away performances all season stinks. There are no signs of improvement in any area, hughes consisently gets everything wrong and his subsitutions have no effect on the games. Hughes says the same speech after defeat, which appeases most fans and stupid media. Robinho played awful, but id include bridge (waste of money) de jong, ireland, elano and even bellamy. What manager in the right mind plays three midgets up front, who holds the ball up for robinho and ireland to play. If you havent guessed i hate mark hughes as city manager. Atleast sven gave us a good 1st half of the season, hughes is doing nothing. Brief summary of citys season - lose, lose, lose, - odd convincing home win! lose, odd convincing home win - lose, lose, lose, - odd win, lose- win, lose, lose odd convincing home win, lose, lose. Hughes out!
enzo city
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14/02/2009 19:25:00

The last 13 fixtures look daunting.
Johnny Baguette
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14/02/2009 19:33:00

I'll be very surprised if you make UEFA Cup next year. VERY!
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14/02/2009 19:59:00

Oh btw we're all waiting to see the 'big' plans Hughes and the Sheikh have for this 'big' club! Hahaha buy all the players you want, that still won't make you a good team if you have no balance. Jo put it very nicely by saying you were just a mish-mash of good but different players who didnt know how to play together!
Report Abuse
14/02/2009 20:02:00

As for the rags, you're debt ridden monster will be up for sale this year. Maybe Sheikh Mancity should buy them and dissolve the lot.
Johnny Baguette
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14/02/2009 21:18:00

He want everything happen in 4 months !!
city 81
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14/02/2009 21:36:00

Sorry to say this, but you are probably the one of the worst teams we have had at Fratton Park this season - well you must be - we actually beat you!
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15/02/2009 00:14:00

Gutless, pathetic performance. Where do we go from here? Don't see many points coming our way this month.
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15/02/2009 00:32:00

looks like 6th has drifted out of reach completely. We can still manage 7th but we need to play a lot better than today.
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15/02/2009 00:35:00

Mid table security will depend upon our remaining home performances on current form.
Johnny Baguette
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15/02/2009 01:20:00

This wasn't a team out there it was 11 individuals with no idea who was who.
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15/02/2009 02:23:00

Eightsin, if you can make 7th on that showing, then we should win the league.
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15/02/2009 02:26:00

Glad I missed this seeming debacle. Going right back to the 70's we've been as good at home as we've been awful away.
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15/02/2009 03:40:00

Johnny, Doody & Co.. I think you have gathered that your performance was woeful yesterday.. seriously woeful... but on a different note the travelling City fans were soooo quiet... Around the ground and in the ground... We normally look forward to playing you guys as like Villa and Newcastle you're 'real' people from 'real' places .. but yesterday your fans were almost annonymous.. and to think we put that cover on the Milton End for you.. Come on City sort out your away form otherwise you ARE gonna struggle (along with us of course !) .. See ya next season fellas .. Just hope it's in the PREMIERSHIP for all our sakes
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15/02/2009 09:50:00

Ah, forever u*****ehead - as ever, the pathetic rags crawl out from under their rocks to have a go when City are havving a tough time of it., The bully-boy mentality of kicking people when they are down is why people have no respect for your team pal. Terrible performance on the road yet again. From approaching something like a settled side before Christmas, we now have a manager who appears intent on trying to find his best 11. Unfortunately now is not the time for experimentation! I agree with several of the Pompey posters on here - we have no chance of making Europe through the league.
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15/02/2009 11:07:00

Sorry - fifthccolumnblue - didn't mean to be rude, especially as we know what its like to be kicked when you are down.
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15/02/2009 11:14:00

I've said it from day one - this manager is not and never will be good enough to put City where we want them to be. It was plain to see yesterday that whatever game plan he decided to go with a significant number of players downed tools. Totally unprofessional of those players to do that and thoroughly disappointing, however, I sympathise with them to a degree because he is dog toffee as a manager.
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15/02/2009 11:56:00

i agree derry
enzo city
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15/02/2009 13:20:00

fifthcolumn - people not respecting our team doesnt affect us does it? Are you honestly saying that none of you dippers will do the same if we were in your position!?? Unless you win a trophy, this is how its going to be for a looooooong time!
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16/02/2009 02:14:00


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