Same time, same place but no sense of déjà vu – Man City v QPR

Two years and 362 days ago Queen’s Park Rangers came to the Etihad Stadium, desperately seeking a result to dig themselves out of the relegation mire.

Their hosts just needed to win to ensure their first ever Premier League crown and be acclaimed as Champions of England after a 44-year wait.

Immortal - Sergio Aguero was simply the best as he struck that unforgettable winner at 93.20 mins into the title decider, almost three years to the day.

Immortal – Sergio Aguero was simply the best as he struck that unforgettable winner at 93.20 mins into the title decider, almost three years to the day.

Three years on, and both Manchester City and QPR would happily embrace the circumstances that prevailed on May 13th, 2012.

Sadly, neither will experience the giddy joys, City of winning the PL title or QPR preserving their top flight status.

City capitulated to Chelsea weeks ago in their pursuit of back-to-back PL glory, whereas the game is just about up for Rangers, who need a Houdini-esque escape to survive this time around.

The Equalizer - Super Sergio makes it 2-2 the last time the two teams met at Loftus Road. Courtesy@MCFC

The Equalizer – Super Sergio makes it 2-2 the last time the two teams met at Loftus Road. Courtesy@MCFC

The Londoners, who still harbour a quartet of ex-City players, Joey Barton, Richard Dunne, Shaun Wright-Phillips and Nedum Onouha, are seven points adrift of safety, with a vastly inferior goal difference.

Anything less than maximum points from their three remaining games will see them relegated.

Similarly, City want to extend a three game winning streak to try and stave off Arsenal, secure second place and ensure no awkward pre-qualification affair for the Champions League.

Appointment at the Palace - Yaya's wonder goal couldn't prevent City sliding to a 2-1 loss at Selhurst Park as their title dreams evaporated. Courtesy@MCFC

Appointment at the Palace – Yaya’s wonder goal couldn’t prevent City sliding to a 2-1 loss at Selhurst Park as their title dreams evaporated. Courtesy@MCFC

Manuel Pellegrini is aided or hindered – it’s subjective – by the return to fitness of Yaya Toure, Vincent Kompany and Stevan Jovetic.

The trio’s availability would ordinarily be a positive, but given off-the-pitch grumblings, on-the-field ‘attitude’ and losses of form, the City boss may well be tempted to go with an unchanged team.

Leaving Yaya and Kompany on the bench would have been inconceivable prior to this season. Jovetic isn’t even sure to make the 18-man squad, whereas Samir Nasri won’t figure in any selection dilemmas.

When in Rome - Samir was magnifique in 2014, but it looks like it'll be au revoir Manchester this summer. Courtesy@MCFC

When in Rome – Samir was magnifique in 2014, but it looks like it’ll be au revoir Manchester this summer. Courtesy@MCFC

A groin strain incurred in a two minute appearance as a substitute at Spurs may even have brought the curtain down on his City career.

The French attacking midfielder is a prime candidate to depart as part of the inevitable cull, after City’s poor title defence.

But it’s Toure who is an odds on favourite for the exit door. The Ivorian is ‘…90% certain to be leaving City this summer…’ according to his slime-ball agent Dimitri Seluk.

Rain Man - Yaya's superb 50 yard pass set up Sergio's equaliser away at QPR in November, but now the storm clouds are gathering for the Ivorian. Courtesy@MCFC

Rain Man – Yaya’s superb 50 yard pass set up Sergio’s equaliser away at QPR in November, but now the storm clouds are gathering for the Ivorian. Courtesy@MCFC

Yaya’s Ukranian mouthpiece, claims a trio of clubs are interested in signing his client. Admittedly,Seluk has all the integrity of a £9 note, but if his claims of a posse of possible suitors for his man are true, then it has to be good news for City.

Roberto Mancini’s audacious attempt to get Yaya to Inter Milan on a free transfer is surely laughable, even though City will be keen to jettison Toure’s reputed £200k-a-week wages.

Inter have just reached an ‘agreement’ with UEFA after having to sit on the Financial Fair Play naughty step, so their ability to pay could be severely compromised.

Final Whistle - Roberto Mancini and his coaching staff celebrate being Premier League Champions 2012. Now Bobby Manc wants to be reunited with Yaya in 2015.

Final Whistle – Roberto Mancini and his coaching staff celebrate being Premier League Champions 2012. Now Bobby Manc wants to be reunited with Yaya in 2015.

A lack of Champions League football could also sour any potential Inter deal for Yaya. That wouldn’t be the case with PSG or even Juventus. If Juve would entertain a deal involving Toure and the man City most want to sign this summer, Paul Pogba, everybody could be a winner.

The Ivorian is 32-years old this Wednesday, so a 2-4-1 birthday-cum-farewell cake might be in the mix. A fee of £10m-£15m, or player plus cash exchange, should be sufficient to see him whisked away.

Personal milestones more worthy of celebration would be Sergio Aguero capturing the Golden Boot as the Premier League’s top scorer, and Joe Hart grabbing Golden Glove recognition for the highest number of clean sheets.

Glove up - Joe Hart is in with a chance of winning the Golden Glove for clean sheets in the Premier League. Courtesy@MCFC

Glove up – Joe Hart is in with a chance of winning the Golden Glove for clean sheets in the Premier League. Courtesy@MCFC

Hart has 12 shutouts, one less than Liverpool’s Simon Mignolet with three games to play. Given City’s erratic defending this season, it’s a real surprise that Joe has a realistic shot at making it four awards in five years.

City against QPR pitches the PL top scorers against the poorest defence.

City have rattled in 71 goals so far – still well short of last season’s 102 – whereas Rangers have leaked 61.

Gone & Going? Ex-City midfielder and all round hot-head, Joey Barton battles with Yaya Toure who could soon be leaving the Etihad. Courtesy@MCFC

Gone & Going? Ex-City midfielder and all round hot-head, Joey Barton (left) battles with Yaya Toure who could soon be leaving the Etihad. Courtesy@MCFC

Chris Ramsey is deprived of the suspended Onouha and Rio Ferdinand, absent on compassionate leave following the tragic death of his 34-year old wife, Rebecca Ellison. Fellow defenders Steven Caulker and Clint Hill are injured, so the visitors will be hard pressed to stem the goals flow past Robert Green.

As was the case three years ago, QPR have the worst away record in the PL having taken just seven points from a possible 51 on 17 road trips. They’ve won only one of their last 10 games, losing seven.

Masterpiece - you could win this beautiful print of the 93.20 Aguerrrrrooo Moment in our competition with Art of Football.

Masterpiece – you could win this beautiful print of the 93.20 Aguerrrrrooo Moment in our competition with Art of Football .

The formbook suggests City could easily relegate their opponents by Sunday afternoon, but we’ve been here before – just ask any fan who rode that rollercoaster of emotion, all the way through to 93 minutes and 20 seconds and the Aguerrrrrrrroooo Moment.

By David Walker

Dedicated to a lovely MCFC Lady Blue called Katy, who could be facing up to troubling times in the not-too-distant future. You know who you are, so here’s wishing you well and a positive outcome next week.

 

COMPETITION TIME

Read But Never Read is delighted to team up with Art of Football http://art-of-football.com/collections/all/man-city to offer you the opportunity to capture, display and wear the AGUERRRRRROOO MOMENT as a Limited Edition Print or on a T-shirt.

93:20 - the moment Sergio Aguero hit Man City's title winning goal in 2012 - captured on a blue backdrop.

93:20 – the moment Sergio Aguero hit Man City’s title winning goal in 2012 – captured on a blue backdrop.

Art of Football describe their unique items as follows: Our hand crafted designs try to emulate the beauty of those split second moments, the moments you never forget, as we look to capture the energy, passion and euphoria that erupts from that one magical kick of a football. We only produce a limited number of each design, so your T shirts, like any good piece of art, are exclusive and completely original.’

93:20 - Sergio scores...this time on a white 'canvas'.

93:20 – Sergio scores…this time on a white ‘canvas’.

To have a chance of winning either T-Shirt or the A3-sized print all you need to do is the following:

* Tell us at what point of the game did Sergio Aguero score the winning goal on May 13th, 2012?

* Tweet your answers jointly to @ReadButNeverRed & @Art_of_Football along with the hashtag #Art

* Leave your answer on the Read But Never Red Comments Section

The competition will run until Friday 15th May when the winners will be contacted and then announced via social media and here at Read But Never Red

 

www.readbutneverred.com @ReadButNeverRed @djwskyblu

 

16 Comments

  1. May 9, 2015  9:14 am by Bob Ruediger Reply

    93:20!!!!!!!! Aguerooooo!!!!!

    • May 9, 2015  10:01 am by David Walker Reply

      Where did you get the idea that Sergio scored the winner on 93:20 mins? ;-)

  2. May 9, 2015  10:03 am by Brian McDonald Reply

    93 minutes 20 seconds

    • May 9, 2015  10:48 am by David Walker Reply

      Thanks for your entry - winners to be announced next week.

  3. May 9, 2015  11:35 am by Richard Cooper Reply

    Along with the Gillingham play off final that day was unforgettable
    Due to the final whistle celebrations Mrs C incurred a bad back which caused us to cancel a proposed camping trip and an ex work colleague of hers had some cracked ribs - some pain is worth it !
    When we eventually arrived at the pub some shell - shocked Manu chums had a bottle of champagne waiting - nice touch.
    It does seem certain that the enigmatic Mr Toure will leave - guess we all have mixed feelings this year about his input but let's not forget the pivotal part he has played in our recent trophy laden seasons.
    Tomorrow should be 3 points as long as City play with the same tempo as last weekend but this season it has been a case of "which City team turns up".
    Answer = 93:20

    • May 9, 2015  12:52 pm by David Walker Reply

      And did the Dom Perignon '57 get poured into the flutes or cracked over your head? ;-) Thanks again RC.

  4. May 9, 2015  1:00 pm by Rikki Burns Reply

    #93.20 etched in every #city fans DNA especially the ones who were there! Or just #CitybeingCity #typicalCity

    • May 9, 2015  9:56 pm by David Walker Reply

      Thanks Rikki. After the birth of my son, it has to be the greatest moment in my life...or was that the conception of my son or marrying his Mum? You get the gist - BLOODY BRILLIANT! ;-)

  5. May 9, 2015  1:50 pm by Angie Hillwood (Morley) Reply

    Sergio's goal: 93.20. Thanks for all your efforts in bringing us Blues your insight & commentary on our great Club. Always appreciated. :-) xx

    • May 9, 2015  9:58 pm by David Walker Reply

      Very generous of you Angie...should that read visually impaired and gobshyte opinions? ;-)

  6. May 9, 2015  4:36 pm by Phill Gatenby Reply

    93:20 and i would like the print please :)

    • May 9, 2015  9:59 pm by David Walker Reply

      How very presumptious Mr Gatenby! Thanks for entering all the way from the good old US of A.

  7. May 12, 2015  11:00 pm by Matt Ward Reply

    93.20 ingrained on the mind!

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