City descend into stinking darkness – SUNDERLAND 1 MAN CITY 0

How the hell do you try and excuse the inexcusable?

Manchester City had seen both Chelsea and Spurs falter and knew that either Manchester United or Arsenal – or even both – would suffer some damage before the day was done.

All they had to do was beat struggling Sunderland and overcome the darkness that had inexplicably consumed them on three consecutive visits to the Stadium of Light.

So City, on a run of six wins out of their last seven, 23 goals scored and just seven conceded, fresh from guaranteed advancement in the Champions League contrived to deliver a ‘performance’ with all the appeal of a stinking, over-used, unflushed curry house bog.

Head down or chin up - Pellegrini's dilemma after woeful showing on Wearside

Head down or chin up – Pellegrini’s dilemma after woeful showing on Wearside

Pellegrini’s men ponced around as the free scoring, fast flowing goal fest of recent times unceremoniously disappeared in a stench ridden mire of mind-blowing mediocrity.

Oh the bitter irony of a day, which began with the nation vowing to remember the self sacrifice of those who had fallen and perished, to preserve our freedom.

Respect - Remembrance Day homage to fallen heroes

Respect – Remembrance Day homage to fallen heroes

A few hours later all City fans wanted to do was forget about the soiled imposters masquerading as their football ‘heroes’ who had sacrificed the dignity of Manchester City Football Club.

In a display of staggering ineptitude, City once again capitulated in battle to the now seemingly mandatory annual 1-0 defeat on Wearside. The red poppies on their sky blue shirts could have been replaced with white feathers – abject clueless surrender was the order of the day. How about City’s spineless troops donate their unearned, ill-gotten week’s wages to the Poppy Appeal and help REAL HEROES who live on a pittance?

What a shocker - Birthday Boy Kolarov covers his eyes as the lights went out on City

What a shocker – Birthday Boy Kolarov covers his eyes as the lights went out on City

There is no valid excuse for this reversal. Yes, City’s defence was the usual crippled unit we’ve come to expect in the absence of Captain Vincent Kompany, and matters were further undermined with the forced absence of Nastasic, Fernandinho and the magical Silva.

Referee Mike Dean, an official I would normally rate as the best official in the Premier, fell woefully short when it came to two fundamental decisions within two pivotal minutes.

Javi Garcia is about as much use as a one-legged man in an arse-kicking competition, but that did not excuse Seb Larsson’s appalling studs up challenge in the 18th minute.

Scowls & Frowns - Aguero & Nasri couldn't kick start City

Scowls & Frowns – Aguero & Nasri couldn’t kick start City

Two of his team mates had been sent off for fouls of a similar ‘stature’ last weekend against Hull. Likewise Larsson should have been shown a straight red.

120 seconds later and Phil Bardsley’s crude push and shove on James Milner went unpunished and the scutty ex-Manure merchant dispatched the winning shot past Pantilimon.

If Dean had done his job it would have been 10 men against 11 in City’s favour and 0-0.  To compound matters he then had the temerity to book Garcia for a relatively innocuous infringement against Steven Fletcher.

There’s no doubting Garcia is a handsome chap and popular with the ladyeeeez. Rumour has it he was substituted at half time to go off and fulfil a BOSS modelling assignment, one where he stood around looking good but doing nothing.

Martin Demichelis was a two-time loser in just his fifth City game

Martin Demichelis was a two-time loser in just his fifth City game

Poor old Javi, he must have mistaken that as his brief for the whole day, but he wasn’t alone. Yaya – the Ivorian Colossus was more akin to a calamity on this occasion.

Toure is rightly revered and, on his day, is one of the finest footballers in the land, but when he doesn’t ‘fancy it’ he really doesn’t fancy it! He gets away with some dreadful displays and if poor old Joe Hart has to go under the microscope, so too should any under-achieving, error prone outfield player.

Every player was culpable of a sub-standard showing – Super Sergio was subdued and the usually carnivorous ‘Beast’ was dining on watercress in an insipid City strike force.

Bloody hell – here was one of the Premier League’s most potent partnerships up against Wes Brown, playing his first game after a 22 month absence from the First XI and as rusty as his shaved ginger main. As for John O’Shea – don’t even get me started!

No Beast Feast - Negredo was all back to front like the rest of his team mates

No Beast Feast – Negredo was all back to front like the rest of his team mates

I could go on, but to what effect? Anybody and everybody who cares so passionately about Manchester City was gut-wrenchingly sickened by Manuel’s miserable muddle.

Read But Never Red coined the #TrustOurMP strapline when the professorial-like Pellegrini succeeded Roberto Mancini. Surprisingly, especially in the light of what is written here today, I remain in the Pro-Pellegrini camp.

Floored & Flawed - City & Sergio hit rock bottom against lowly Sunderland

Floored & Flawed – City & Sergio hit rock bottom against lowly Sunderland

Yes, City sucked big time yesterday. Yes, City have needlessly puked up 10 precious points to the likes of Cardiff, Villa, Chelsea and once again, Sunderland and yes, City are eighth – frickin eighth – in the table. It makes uncomfortable reading, but it is eminently recoverable.

Alternatively City are just two wins away from the top of the Premier League, the title race is weirdly wide open like never before and Vincent Kompany should be back against Spurs in a fortnight.

Compared with last season after 11 games, City are six points worse off and six places lower in the PL. However, the club had already been knocked out of the Capital One Cup and any Champions League hopes had virtually disappeared a year ago.

Pellegrini has been tasked with winning five major trophies in three years. It may be that the City hierarchy see Champions League success as the priority, the golden ticket – the one that brings global recognition to City and the club’s Abu Dhabi ownership.

Thwarted - Micah and City couldn't find a way past resolute Sunderland defending

Thwarted – Micah and City couldn’t find a way past resolute Sunderland defending

It’s a mouth-watering proposition but highly improbable this season. The trick is to progress, gain European credibility reach the quarter finals, perhaps even the semi finals – but NOT at the expense of squandering a domestic crown.

City fans want that Premier League title back. They know it can be done – but not with appalling tripe such as yesterday. The truth is no team is running away with the PL and City still have as good a chance as anyone else.

Lest it’s forgotten Sheikh Mansour, in a rare public address last week, reiterated his commitment to City, stating that the clubs ambitions were ‘…large and unlimited…’ and that the club is ‘…only part way through its upgrading process…’

It bodes well for January reinforcements and the shipping out of the ‘squad’ players who flatter to deceive.

Trust MP - Faith is on the wane in the wake of latest away loss but Pellegrini will get it right

Trust MP – Faith is on the wane in the wake of latest away loss but Pellegrini will get it right

There’s no denying City stank the place out yesterday but more fragrant times are ahead.

In the meantime it would help if Pellegrini and some of his under-achieving players took a strong smell of the coffee.  


 By David Walker



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  1. November 11, 2013  4:06 am by Frank Reply

    While I still trust in MP, his continuing to start Javi Garcia is mind boggling. He is simply sub par and needs to be sold. Even more baffling is not starting Navas, who, had he started the game, probably would have fed the beast several times over and created multiple chances for Aguero. I simply do not understand the line up chosen today. I understand we are missing Silva and Fernandinho, but simple logic would have been to start Navas and put Milner in the position he plays best. I don't believe this bollocks that MP "Doesnt get the Premiere League" but he also needs to take a step back and see that this constant tinkering just doesn't help matters. I thought we had settled into the proper starting XI, and again the injuries didnt help, but not starting zabaleta and navas was a huge huge error. Yaya is not a leader on the pitch. He does what he wants and you are right, he truly doesn't fancy it sometimes. Maybe he should only play against the top teams. I really thought we had worked out the kinks and were in gear, but there is a lot to think about over the break. That being said, CTID!!!!

    • November 11, 2013  4:09 am by Frank Reply

      Further to my above comment, one would think Mike Dean was on someone's payroll with those incredibly bad calls. the tackle on Garcia was ridiculous and i didn't know you could forearm deck a defender in order to score a goal. Is this the WWE?

      • November 11, 2013  8:46 am by David Walker Reply

        I have not a Scooby to explain Mike Dean's abysmal performance. Blind doesn't come close, but still that does not excuse or explain this abject showing from City.

    • November 11, 2013  8:44 am by David Walker Reply

      People will say that it doesn't help to 'pick' on individuals but apart from Stoke away when he scored last season -it may even have been his debut - Garcia has at best 'whelmed' never 'overwhelmed' and often 'underwhelmed'. £16m+ of chronic under achievement or does helping sell a few BOSS Suits count? JG has been played out of position - not his fault - but now, when in his preferred position he is still ineffective it's time to sell. All told it was a disgraceful performance by all in sky blue - apart from Navas.

    • November 11, 2013  10:09 am by carole Reply

      Agree 100% about the starting X1......I was astonished Navas didn't start...perfect replacement for Silva to link up with Negredo as they did so successfully at Sevilla AND will probably doing so for the world champions in the upcoming #Spain friendlies! Are they not good enough to play for us against Sunderland then??

      But not starting Zabaleta was even worse. I appreciate he wants to give Micah some game-time and probably thought this was the ideal opportunity but the gulf in class is enormous. Micah looks more and more like a lumbering hippo with every wanted to pass the ball to him going forward as he just isn't on their level.

      However, I thought we put in a terrific effort, especially in the second half and I am surprised David thinks we were so poor and unmotivated. You've been overly harsh here David. I think everyone put in a shift. We totally dominated, had 67% possession, had something like 25 shots on goal. But there will always be days when it is just impossible to unlock a massed defence, when the best srikers in the world miss by centimetres, when the ball just won't go in the net. I have seen Barcelona struggle in exactly the same way. It just didn't go our way yesterday and I think Pellegrini is absolutely right to say we were unlucky...Sergio, Edin, Negredo never stopped trying to unlock that defence and could easily have won that match for us 3-1 on another occasion.

      .And it didn't just happen to us did it? It was exactly the same for Spurs, even more embarrassing as they were at home. Arsenal lost 1-0 too. These are fine margins. Sometimes teams put in a terrific defensive shift and there's no way through. This was a Cup Final performance by Sunderland, they are fighting for survival here.

      ONE mistake led to ONE goal!! Abject performance? I'm not having it!!

      • November 11, 2013  12:33 pm by David Walker Reply

        Well that told me didn't it Moonbeam! There is always going to be so much subjectivity around performances, both individual and collective, and I fully take on board your stoical defence of some players and the shortcomings of others.

        Yes, I am scathing on this occasion, but I'm no knee jerk reactionary, no fairweather supporter. It's simply I - like many others - am sick to the back teeth of City rolling into town against undoubtedly weaker opponents and showing all the cutting edge of a blancmange.

        We have some of the best players in the world in our ranks and they go missing in action far to frequently.Performance levels fluctuate to unacceptable extremes. Yes, 'smaller' teams are going to pack the defence to try to smother and contain our play, but we have to find ways to go around, over or through a bank of defenders.

        We fail to do so on too many occasions.We will lose this PL title race because of some mental aberration that afflicts us when presented with resolute oppponents while on our travels. It makes no sense and I abhor any player who slopes around the field expecting others to find a remedy when the going gets tough. There are players in our ranks who are good at blathering to the TV cameras and living the dream. They seem to have forgotten about hard work and hard running as they lope around in a languid fashion.

        With respect I don't care about how Chelsea, Spurs, Arsenal, Manure or whoever and how they slip up, I just want to know why our collection of players continually fail to optimise opportunites when they are presented.

        I still trust Pellegrini, but to me it's obvious we do need an improvement in player personnel as we continue the 'upgrading' process of which Sheikh Mansour spoke so eloquently last week.

  2. November 11, 2013  5:20 am by Eileen Fullen Reply

    How many times do Man City fans bounce back .Disbelief at yesterday's performance from a shambolic City again further embarrassment. Is buying players the answer not when you see the likes of the lesser teams borrow our Pride In Battle banner. We should be knocking em dead!! Yes we may struggle to get top four how embarrassing. How do some of our players look in the mirror in the mornings without guilt.will this tag ever stop Same Old City!!!!

    • November 11, 2013  8:48 am by David Walker Reply

      Same Old City, Typical City, Shitty City - they're all terms that will stick around for as long as the players who represent our club churn out garbage like yesterday.

  3. November 11, 2013  5:31 am by Eileen Fullen Reply

    Sorry in my frustration I forgot to say Top Top read again from one who never lets us down David

    • November 11, 2013  9:11 am by David Walker Reply

      I wouldn't go that far, but thankyou. Like most fans after watching crap like that I just want to avoid Sky Sports News and the glee of the media gloaters who detest #MCFC. Alas I am stupid enough to opt to write a #MCFC blog and it would be a dereliction of duty to only write about the good times.

  4. November 11, 2013  5:31 am by Eileen Fullen Reply

  5. November 11, 2013  6:26 am by Chris Williams Reply

    I was vey surprised to see so many changes, yes some were enforced, but with no game for two weeks why the other changes ? Did MP make the mistake of under estimating SAFC ? If so inexcusable ! The other inexcusable actions wa how the majority go players just trudged down the tunnel at full time showing their supporters contempt rather than thanking them for the non stop backing, very poor.

    Over the course of a season you expect games like that th be fair, however that is three now 11 games, and losing almost a third of your opening games is poor.

    We used to use to City ruining our weekends and may be over the last three years have been spoilt, but I didn't think that feeling would return so quickly ! But we have to remember we've been in much worst places than this.

    • November 11, 2013  9:16 am by David Walker Reply

      Good observations Chris, especially the fact the supporters travel and pay to watch shyte like that, whereas the players are paid to produce shyte like that #finemargins! Why MP elected to make so many change is beyond me - injuries are one thing, but why decimate the defence when it was only Nastasic who was ruled out? The Jury is still out on MP - our Engineer - is he a fine, tuned precision made instrument or a total spanner? We should know by close of the year.

  6. November 11, 2013  9:21 am by Fifthcolumnblue Reply

    Perfect storm yesterday. Visiting our "Bogey" team who are in the full bloom of the new manager bounce, an injury disrupted team and a crap referee.

    Still firmly in the Pellegrini camp, as I feel it's far too soon to judge a manager after only 1/4 of a season. Some of the foamers who have emerged after this admittedly poor result would do well to remember that Mancini had exactly the same result in his last few visits to the Stadium of Light. Indeed, at times yesterday we looked like Mancini's team when confronted by a parked bus - all sideways passing, overly complicated moves around the opponent's box and little end product.

    I do believe there were some odd selections yesterday, and agree that Garcia simply needs to go ASAP. Unfortunately, I also feel that Micah Richards is going backwards these days, and Zabaleta is far and away our first choice RB. Micah is supposed to offer a more attacking threat than Zabba, yet at times I wondered if he was even on the pitch. It speaks volumes for his contribution that most of our attacking threat from the flanks came from the much derided Kolarov. And what Micah was doing jogging around in midfield, thus leaving James Milner to deal with Bardsley I'll never know. He's out of contract next summer, and as much as I love his loyalty to the club, I'd be surprised if he was given a new deal.

    As for Yaya, he is a world class player who looks like a total donkey when he's not in the right frame of mind, and someone hungry like Rodwell would have made a far greater contribution yesterday.

    Final point - what does someone like Lopez have to do to make the bench when we are in the midst of what amounts to an injury crisis? He may not be the finished article, but an injection of youth, pace and creativity would have been just the ticket yesterday

    P.S. Full credit to Sunderland for being solid as a rock at the back, they may have scored yet another skanky goal against us, but they certainly deserve credit for the way they hung onto their lead.

    • November 11, 2013  9:33 am by David Walker Reply

      All totally valid No 5. As for Lopes I think he is nursing an injury. In terms of January sales or even Summertime Blues Goodbyes - I wouldn't lose sleep over the departures of Garcia, Dzeko, Kolarov, Lescott and yes, sad to say it Richards. If we bank £50m for that lot, as well as getting rid of mad mega wages for Edin, Aleks and Joleon, then we can buy a better crop of quality players who would better serve Pellegrini.

      I'm with you that MP needs to be given at least the season to see how we're shaping up. You get the Bobby Manc rose-tinted glasses brigade with short memories after matches like these. MP has fcked up once in Sunderland, Roberto achieved the hat-trick!

      • November 14, 2013  6:14 pm by AB Reply

        Too much travelling with work to reply earlier. Great article again and spot on with the players that sadly won't make the grade. We agreed light heartedly a few weeks ago on our theory about Garcia, simply cannot comprehend why he still plays. As for Richards, whilst many on here admire his loyalty to mcfc and he is a genuine likeable lad sadly IMO he has peaked as a footballer at City. I don't believe MP rates him, proof only the other week when Garcia got the nod at CH ahead of Richards. Look forward to the next article.

  7. November 11, 2013  11:51 am by Graham Ward Reply

    Trenchant views there, David, in this report, your strongest since Southampton last season. It was a very disappointing day, yet we are still in the mix.

    • November 11, 2013  12:36 pm by David Walker Reply

      I was suitably miffed - yes! Equally we are still very much in the mix. The annoying element is we could be four points clear of the pack had we not thrown away 10 precious points so far this season.

  8. November 11, 2013  12:46 pm by Fifthcolumnblue Reply

    Has Larson been charged by the FA yet?

    • November 12, 2013  7:42 am by David Walker Reply

      No, and neither will he be - it's a flamin' farce.

  9. November 11, 2013  5:49 pm by DOUG Reply

    You are spot on Dave with your assessment of the game, poor isn't the word. I just hope the players will be hurting as much as the fans & what a good idea that all the squad gives there wages to the poppy appeal because they certainly don't deserve it after that showing. As you say teams will park the bus its up to us to find away through for all the possession we had we never looked like scoring. Some of those players have got to go they just not good enough but i feel the management team must take there share of the blame why so much tinkering ?????. I'm still firmly in the #TrustOurMP camp but why wont he give Rodwell a chance.

    • November 12, 2013  7:35 am by David Walker Reply

      Well we all know there's not a chance in hell of players donating wages to the Poppy Appeal - sadly - but there must be hope that MP will STOP so many wholesale changes once he has a fully fit defensive unit from which to choose. The defence - more than any other element in a team - benefits from consistency and the forging and understanding of on field playing patterns. strengths and weaknesses.

      If some of our stars aren't going to put in a shift e.g. Yaya, then shift them out to the sub's bench and see if they like being 'languid' watching instead of playing in the games. If Rodwell can stay fit - asking a lot I know - he could be a major asset to the team. Rather like Vincent and Micah, he is susceptible to far too many injuries.

  10. November 11, 2013  7:24 pm by mark james Reply

    v v worrying our away form we can mske every excuse going but the fact remains weve took 4 points from. 24 on our travels n tht is not prem league title wining form

    • November 12, 2013  7:39 am by David Walker Reply

      Totally agree MJ. We lost a total of four away games all season last time out so, if we don't lose anymore and win the rest we'll be absolutely fine. I have to go now. there are some men in white coats coming to collect me and chuck me in the back of a lorry to cart me off to the 'Funny Farm'.

  11. November 12, 2013  10:25 pm by Etta Reply

    I was so disappointed with the result, and also how the game was played by our team. It's vital we learn to break down defensive play by other teams, had the same issues last year. It just seemed there was no way we were going to score, no matter what. Didn't think we were abject, but they need to step up and play their sock off! I always say 'they wouldn't wash in my water' and I'd make them make their own way home, maybe a tad too harsh. But I still love them! Well most of them. Enjoyed your view points if not in full agreement, but that's what this funny old game is all about. Hope your keeping okay.

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