Monday, 11 November 2013

Sunderland 1-0 Pellegrini

Naivety. Our Manager’s naivety lost us this one. A BBC interviewer asked Manuel how, having scored 12 in 2 games, we failed to score today. The honest answer he’s never going to tell…or quite simply he just can’t see that his much weakened starting 11 contributed massively to this avoidable defeat. So I’ll spell it out…

What was he thinking?

So you want to improve your away form. So you want to banish the hoodoo of our terrible record at the Stadium of Light (although our pragmatic Manager doesn’t believe in bogey grounds – huh…welcome to the English Premier League and Manchester City). So you want to keep up with, nay, catch up on the top-chasing pack.

So why the ffffff…heck do you start with 2 training cones (Kolarov & Garcia if you needed to ask) and leave Zabaleta, Clichy & Navas on the bench!?

It was Stoke City away all over again…apart from the result of course. Aren’t you supposed to learn lessons?

I’m not wholly blaming Alex (credit for the fine shot in the last 10 minutes) and Javi but they are just…not…good enough – and we had better on the bench. Why…WHY would you not play your strongest team especially knowing that you have no other game for a fortnight [due to ANOTHER flippin’ international break]?

And I’m certainly not blaming Micah either; it’s just that, once again, at the risk of repeating myself, we had better, more-proven players on the bench. If someone would like to tell me why…





…was better than starting with…





…then I’m all ears.

Of course Manuel then replaced the very poor (even by his low standards) Garcia at half time; moving Milner into the middle and putting a greater threat down the right in Navas. Yes, of course we still didn’t score but just look how much more threatening we were in the second half. And late on, Zaba came on for Micah - there’s a good argument, in fact, that should things had not been happening then putting Richards on for Zaba towards the end might have shaken things up with his supporting, slightly-more-attacking runs.

But the damage had already been done; Sunderland look liked nervous Nellies for the first 17 minutes or so, absolutely frightened at what we might do to them. So it angers me that, due to the starting line-up in my opinion, we didn’t make an early impact, which then gave them tonnes of confidence. They must have looked at us and thought, ‘we can have these’. And they did…and then after scoring pretty much shut the door on us for the rest of the game; certainly in the second half. They defended well I have to add.

Learn Manuel but learn very quickly please.

Pellegrini reaction

Any positives from the weekend?

Well, they are positives but once again it frustrates the hell out of me that we didn’t take advantage. Jeeeeze…we don’t half make things difficult for ourselves with missed opportunities.

-          Tottenham lose at home!

-          Chelsea drop 2 points at home (and boy should they have lost)!

-          Arsenal lose

-          Everton only pick up a point away at lowly Crystal Palace

Negatives? Liverpool, Manyoo and Southampton all win; we have to spend at least 2 weeks staring at our side laying in 8th going into the end of November as we face unpredictable Tottenham (at home thankfully) next.

Having said that, with other teams also regularly pressing their own self-destruct buttons we are, somehow, still only 6 points from the top. Unbelievable! Those who said at the start of the season that this will be the closest Premier League for a long time - with the winners finishing on a very low points total - are being proven right at the moment.

Just 8 points separate the top 9 teams almost a 3rd of the way into the season…and I can’t believe 9th place now houses Newcastle United! Just goes to show you what 6 points can do for you, which frustrates me even more to think about!

No comments:

Post a Comment