City V Arsenal- A reaction

A point gained it has to be said, in a game where the continental hangover was obvious for the City players.

Mentally and physically, they looked worn out at times against Arsenal, but it is no coincidence that their best spell in the game coincided with the change of system after the break. Mancini tends to go for 4-4-2 in big games these days, and while I’m sure fans are glad pundits don’t talk about him being a ‘defensive Italian’ anymore, there has to be times to use it and times not to.

Against teams such as Arsenal, where the way they will hurt you is through midfield, playing 3 centre midfielders surely makes sense, also allowing Yaya Toure to break forward more often. One of their best chances to wrap the game up at 1-0, came when Toure broke from midfield but delayed his pass, making Aguero’s chance more difficult.

It’s actually a surprise that City didn’t hold on to a lead, after scraping through a goal up after a poor first half, you would have thought that with 5 in midfield, Arsenal would struggle to get through; that was the case until a sloppy goal conceded from a corner.

It was also surprise that Carlos Tevez was rested for this game. While I agree that Aguero needed game time, he looked a bit rusty at times (on the stretch I know, but I can’t believe he didn’t score at the end), and Tevez could certainly have tormented Mertesacker and co.

At the end of the day, a points not the end of the world, especially not at this stage of the season, and they can now look forward to a the [insert sponsor] cup this week.
Matthew Morlidge, @MattMorlidge

For more Football Blogs and opinion from football fans around the world