EPL Match Review: Manchester City found wanting at Norwich | Sportzwiki

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EPL Match Review: Manchester City found wanting at Norwich 

It was to be a script of another stroll in the park for Manuel Pellegrini’s Manchester City side but Chris Highto and his sprited Norwich City had other ideas as they botched it all up. A 0-0 draw left City pondering for excuses as they missed their chance to go top of the table after last weekend’s home reverse against Chelsea. Norwich City tend to find solutions when they are at their non-performing worst; and had answers to everything City threw at them. It was a frustrating night of work for the Skyblues; one which could have serious implications on their title aspirations.

TEAMSHEETS AND GAMEPLAN

Norwich City started with a defensive minded 4-5-1 setup in a bid to unsettle City’s midfield which was yet again without the injured Fernandinho. Anthony Pilkington, Bradley Johnson, Leroy Fer, Nathan Redmond and Alexander Tettey formed a very flat midfield; Gary Hooper was the lone man upfront. The Canaries surely didn’t want a repeat of the 7-0 reverse at the hands of the same opponents few months ago. Sebastian Bassong and loan signing Joseph Yobo completed the lineup.

As for City, they were without the injury-hit Sergio Aguero and rested Edin Dzeko. Stevan Jovetic, James Milner and Gael Clichy were the changes made by Pellegrini as he looked to immediately bounce back from their home defeat against Chelsea. Alvaro Negredo started upfront with Jovetic in Pellegrini’s favored 4-4-2; Yaya Toure had James Milner alongside him after last weekend’s disaster that was Martin Demichelis. David Silva and Jesus Navas were stationed wide. Vincent Kompany,Pablo Zabaleta completed the lineup.

THE GAME

Only two shots on target make a poor reading for a normally brilliant Manchester City side, who looked lost in the final third of the pitch. Gary Hooper had a goal rightly disallowed for offside, and that was the closest both sides came to finding the net in a drab draw. It isn’t often that you see City play goalless treats; and while this was a Norwich City side setup to soak the pressure, at least City could’ve had a better eye on the goal had Aguero been fit. Alvaro Negredo crashed a firm header onto John Ruddy’s crossbar, and that was it for a lackluster City.

With this result, Manchester City slip down to third in the table, two points behind leaders Chelsea. What was to be a routine away win for City turned out to be a frustratingly poor night; they had their now-customary possession advantage but you can only go so far with possession. City seemed to lack motivation from the off; this is what normally happens when you’re so invincible that a home loss can send you into a hangover. The lag was evident as the normally good Toure failed to pierce the Norwich midfield.

A case of what could’ve been for City, but it was a missed chance to say the least. If they miss out on the title this season, fingers will point to results as such; games which are winnable on paper but are banana-skins on the pitch. For Norwich, it was a point hard-earned but well-deserved. They didn’t lose their focus all night and made City work harder than they normally do. Manchester City will look for the positives out of the game, but it is hard to find even one. 

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EPL Match Review: Manchester City found wanting at Norwich

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