Kompany blow causes alarm
- Fri 09 Mar 2012, 8:04AM
- Posted by Peter Ferguson
Thursday night, Channel ITV4. It doesn't quite work as a chant, and it's hit a bum note with the media wondering what effect Lisbon might have in light of Vincent Kompany's injury.
As the Telegraph's Mark Ogden and others point out, the skipper's prolonged absence would be a title blow, especially if he is absent for the re-arranged game against a resurgent Chelsea.
The Telegraph man notes that "without Kompany at the heart of their defence, City were unconvincing," while adding: "Despite the defeat, Mancini insists that City will overturn the deficit and progress to the quarter-finals."
If a little magic is needed in the return leg, there's always David Silva ... or, er, Mario Balotelli. The Independent has a Noel Gallagher exclusive - doesn't everybody? - talking about his hero Super Mario and includes this little nugget.
Noel says: "My favourite Balotelli story is the magic tricks. One day he was wandering through the Trafford Centre minding his own business, as if he could do, like a modern-day Mr T.
And there's a guy doing magic, and he asked if he could teach him some magic
"The guy said, 'No, I don't teach magic.' So Mario went home, pondered it, and ... went back to the Trafford Centre and said, 'teach me these magic tricks'.
"The guy said, 'No, there's too many people here.' So Mario took him in his car, back to his house for dinner, and the guy showed him magic over dinner. That's where he learnt the tricks."
So that's why he's always asking: "Pick a card, any card." Usually the joker, for some reason.
In more serious news, Brian Marwood has warned the BBC "that too much international football is in danger of 'killing' the Premier League".
They report that City's chief football administration officer - who won the title with Arsenal - believes "unreasonable demands are being made of players in England".
He's quoted: "We're in a very fortunate position at City. We have a strong squad, a large squad, and we've had the chance to rest players at certain moments.
"There are other clubs who haven't been able to enjoy that. You're always loading and putting strain on players and there will be an inevitable breaking point."
"The 23-year-old has enjoyed a stunning start to life in Portugal having only joined the club last summer (from Standard Liege) for what now appears to be a snip as £6.7million."