Guardian: 'Inspired' Aguero can do anything
- 28 October 2013 09:26
- Posted by @markbooth_mcfc
Such is the nature of football; this media round-up would have had a very different tone if yesterday’s match had finished on 89 minutes.
No doubt all publications would have been hailing a Manuel Pellegrini tactical masterclass as City claimed a deserved point from one of their most difficult away assignments.
Unfortunately, the game always has and always will, run for 90 minutes and Fernando Torres’s late winner casts reflections from Sunday’s game in a different light altogether, with Joe Hart and Matija Nastasic under the microscope for their part in the defensive mix-up.
This is no place for a blame game though, so let’s start with Barney Ronay’s Guardian column on the game which eloquently heaps praise on Sergio Aguero, who has now scored nine goals in his last eight games.
With talk of a “Torres reborn” after his late tap-in leading on most back pages today, Ronay checks the hyperbole and argues that the former Liverpool man has a long way to go to match his counterpart from Sunday’s game.
“By contrast [to Torres] Sergio Agüero, who scored a sublime equaliser two minutes into the second half, has nine in eight games, the past five all away from home and overall has 56 goals in 77 starts for City.
“For a man who doesn't really score tap-ins, that's a lot of inspiration. Both players – for reasons that remain unclear – have their names tattooed in Elvish on their forearms, but the similarities pretty much end there.
“Aguero, by contrast, is a pure luxury-good of a striker, free from rough edges and thrummingly high spec."
...Barney Ronay - The Guardian...
“His shot for the goal was hit with the bony part of the outside of his right foot, and struck to sweetly it whistled flat and straight past Chelsea's goalkeeper Petr Cech, who flapped at empty air like a man swatting midges in the dark.
“With 18 minutes remaining he picked the ball up 40 yards from goal and didn't so much skip past Terry as briefly render him invisible with a sideways glide.
“Terry scrabbled back after Agüero like a man in tearful doomed pursuit of the last night bus. No disgrace there: Agüero in this mood can, in flashes, do pretty much anything he likes.”
Elsewhere, FourFourTwo’s excellent StatZone app may well have found one of the reasons that City are losing games on the road.
In their “Five things we learned” piece posted on the site last night, Ben Welch of the website argues that, while City are having enough of the ball over the course of the 90 minutes, they’re losing it too often in the final third.
“City had 54% of the possession, but their passing in the final third let them down,” Welch points out.
“They attempted 478 passes to Chelsea’s 396 and recorded an 84% success rate.
“Of those passes, 185 were in the home side’s territory, but only 134 found the feet of a team-mate. Jose Mourinho’s team saw less of the ball, tried fewer passes at the business end of the pitch, but their success rate behind enemy lines was superior.”
Finally, before yesterday’s game Pablo Zabaleta stated his belief that City have the best squad in the Premier League.
"I think we have a better squad now than when we won the title," he told the Sunday People.
"Some players have left and some big players have arrived. Carlos Tevez and Mario Balotelli were important players for us when we were champions and so were lads like Nigel de Jong and Adam Johnson.
"But now it feels like we have at least two top players for every single position in the team. I think the balance we have is very good. The manager has a lot of options and that is good.”
Tickets are still available for City v CSKA at the Etihad Stadium, which will go a long way to deciding the Sky Blues UCL group fate.
They are priced from £33 for Adults and £17.50 for Under 16s. Purchase online here, or call 0161 444 1894 option 1, option 1, option 2 (tickets purchased over the telephone are subject to a £2.50 booking fee per ticket), or visit the Ticket Office located on the first floor of the Etihad Stadium City Store.
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