Manchester Madness: Sergio Aguero starts with a Bang as City Keep Title Hopes Alive

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Another week, another Manchester City heartbreak this time courtesy of an injury to David Silva, during the bout against West Bromwich Albion, where Silva had to be stretchered off. Just when the team looked like maybe they could discover their form from the beginning of the season to keep pace with Liverpool, the ankle of Silva changed the fate of the team.

This week Manchester City decided to show up after their brief break against Sunderland. Sergio Aguero was leading the line and looked fierce throughout the game. In the first three minutes he started it with a bang, when Aguero forced a save from Ben Foster leading for an easy tap in for Pablo Zabaleta to put the sky blues up a goal at the Ethiad. For a moment shades of the draw last week were gone as City continued to batter West Bromwich Albion leading from another goal from Aguero from outside the penalty area.

Shortly thereafter, a familiar ugly face showed itself, City desperately needs a new left back. Regardless if City miraculously wins the title this season, manager Manuel Pellegrini needs to find a proper left back. Gael Clichy’s suspect defending was on display again today where his indecision in closing down on a Graham Dorrans who was attempting to force a beleaguered West Brom back into the match led to a goal.

This is not Clichy’s only lapse of judgment and sadly he does not get the blame that is often put upon Martín Demichelis. For example, earlier in the season he allowed the ghost of a Liverpool Fernando Torres to blow past him to supply the opening goal in a critical away match against Chelsea. His lapse of judgment was on full display again when he allowed Bayern Munich’s Thomas Mueller to drift in from his position to slot in an easy goal against a flabbergasted Joe Hart. Clichy has shown time and time again that he is the actual weak link in the back four.

One could argue that Aleksandar Kolarov has had a better time this season but Kolarov’s defending has also been lackluster. Far too often he would not track back to aid the back four or he would be caught out of position. The only bright spot in Kolarov’s game is that he can whip in a great cross as well as taking a great free kick, but that only really supports the notion that he should be playing as wide player instead of being apart of the defense.

With the current transfer rumors saying that Bacary Sagna of Arsenal will be a back up for Zabaleta next season, City will need a proper left back. While the production of goals has certainly stepped up this season, the strong defense from previous seasons needs to return. Vincent Kompany and Pablo Zabaleta cannot be the only two in the back four who can be counted upon, especially when their form has wavered recently. Coupled with an injured Matija Nastasić, Pellegrini’s first order of business in the transfer window needs to be on securing a new fullback and possibly a centreback.

Switching gears back to the game, City after going 3 – 1 up relaxed against the visitors. The attack began to let up and Samir Nasri almost fell asleep on the pitch. In the first half Nasri was playing well and putting in a solid effort but the second half, he began to look like shades of last season where he would go missing for much of the game. This became especially noticeable after Silva needed to be carted off and he was supposed to facilitate the attack. Sadly, he decided to go missing and hopefully this will not be a dark omen. He will desperately be needed along with Jesus Navas to stretch an Everton defense fighting for fourth place two weeks away, and a Crystal Palace side still fighting for a spot in the Premier League.

The club’s future looks much better after bouncing back from the draw last week, but the true fate of Manchester resides in the hands of a charismatic Portuguese manger who’s club is coming off a shock loss from Sunderland, and will have to face a threatening Atletico Madrid side in the semi-final of the Champions League. Toss in that Chelsea will be without their best player in Eden Hazard, having to face a Liverpool side that does not seem to let up, makes me wish that Jose Mourinho again will pull something out of his sleeve to help the sky blues.

 

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