Tag Archives: Man City

‘His Best Performance For Liverpool’ Huge Praise For Liverpool Midfielder In Man City Draw

Emre Can’s had his fair share of criticism this season, but another stellar display in the absence of captain Jordan Henderson saw the German gain a huge round of praise following Liverpool’s 1-1 draw with Manchester City on Sunday afternoon.

Ridiculed for a lack of consistency and class in the middle of the park, Can was one of the stand out performers at the Etihad, bringing steel and grit to Liverpool’s display. Having scored the winner against Burnley last weekend, Can is certainly proving he has much more to give to this side with contract talks still at a standoff.

Here’s how fans reacted to Emre Can’s performance at the weekend. Do you agree?

Credit has to go to Can for how he’s reacted after such a poor patch of form. The snide and cheek we have witnessed in recent weeks, most noticeably against Arsenal, has given this team something it’s lacked since the days of Javier Mascherano and co., causing some to suggest he should retain his spot even when Henderson returns from the sidelines – a stark contrast to previous comments on the young midfielder.

The 23-year-old is very much playing for his future, with contract talks at a standstill. Whether it be down to wage demands or playing time, Liverpool would be foolish to let the midfielder leave Anfield in the summer.

While football fans of the modern era will always pick little holes in players performances, the consensus is very much that Emre Can should be a Liverpool player for the foreseeable future. With performances like this weekend, there’s no wonder clubs like Juventus are keeping a watchful eye on Can’s future.

‘He Can’t Defend’ Fans On Twitter Criticise Manchester City Defender After Everton Horror Show

Manchester City put in perhaps their worse performance of the season as they fell to a heavy 4-0 defeat against Tottenham on Sunday afternoon. 

It was another shambolic defensive display from City and Pep Guardiola, and that’s something we have said far too much this season. The club have now conceded 26 goals in 21 league games, no other team in the top 7 of the league have conceded as many, in fact, 16th placed Middlesborough have conceded less.

So who is at fault? One player to be heavily criticised today is John Stones. The man who left Everton for Manchester City in the summer returned to the lineup and put in a pretty dreadful performance.

City, as usual, played out from the back and whilst they started the game looking relatively comfortable with that style of play, they were punished for their expansive style by a lethal Everton team that took pretty much every chance they had. There was far too much space between central defenders Nicolas Otamendi and Stones and it was made all too easy for the hosts.

Another worrying performance from Stones has left many questioning his large price tag and it puts Pep in a real dilemma. The club clearly need to improve defensively, but having spent around £90million on Otamendi and Stones, they cannot afford to just dispose of their current options.

There’s no obvious statistics to highlight Stones’ poor performance, but if you were watching the game it was clear for all to see that he seriously struggled. This will be a worry not just for Manchester City and Pep, but for England and the national team, who seemed to be preparing to build their future defence around young Stones.

Here’s how Twitter reacted to the player’s performance.

To be honest, I’ve never been the biggest fan of John Stones. I think the £50million Manchester City paid for him is absolutely horrific. He’s really not worth anything close to that amount of money.

Let’s not pretend that Stones was the only bad performer in that Manchester City team today. Pep’s men were second best all over the pitch and the defending across the back 5 was simply shambolic.

It’s hard to simply suggest that Stones should not play out from the back etc. but that is the style of play of Guardiola and of Stones. It’s why the player cost so much money and it’s why the club were so insistent on bringing in Pep. City must now focus on trying to perfect their unique style of play, but Pep, for the first time in his career, may actually need to adapt his approach slightly, or the English game will simply swallow him up.

‘Never Hated A Player More’ Arsenal Defender Comes Under Strong Criticism After Manchester City Nightmare

Arsenal travelled to the Etihad Stadium on Sunday afternoon in a bid to close the gap on first-placed Chelsea, a gap which has extended to nine points after the Gunners dropped points against Everton mid-week.

Unfortunately for Arsene Wenger’s men, they conceded to consecutive defeats in the space of a week as their title hopes took a massive dent with the Gunners sitting in fourth place, nine points off top and looking very vulnerable.

Most Arsenal players carried on their abysmal form from Goodison Park but one player in particular was on the receiving end of some strong criticism, that being Brazilian defender Gabriel Paulista, who was atrocious against Manchester City as he showed why Arsenal miss Mustafi so much.

Gabriel, who arrived at the North Londoners in 2015, has failed to cement himself a place in the starting lineup for nearly two years and today showed exactly why, he was abysmal in possession, for someone playing in a team managed by Arsene Wenger you would be very surprised by how Gabriel was playing, he was constantly going long for Alexis Sanchez, just for Arsenal to concede possession and be put under more pressure.

Gabriel lacked the technical ability to string a few passes on the surface, he was not able to pass through to our midfield to help build up play from the back and was extremely wasteful with the ball, he would either go sideways or over the midfield, and straight to City defenders, this cost Arsenal crucially today and the signs are really showing why Mustafi is so key to this team.

As a central defender you have to be much more aware and more disciplined than Gabriel was, he can often be quite rash in his defensive duties and can be caught out of position very often.

Gabriel made just two tackles this afternoon, one more than Olivier Giroud who was subbed on in the latter stages of the game, that just shows what kind of defensive performance Gabriel has against Manchester City.

The Brazilian always looks very uncomfortable with the ball too, he looks like he does not know what to do with it, or has a lack of confidence in himself, to which he results to just giving the ball away or play wayward passes, something which will anger Arsene Wenger.

For some humour, Gabriel nearly caused Hector Bellerin to score an own goal after the Brazilian hoofed the ball at Bellerin’s face and it took quick reactions from Petr Cech to save the shot, no it is not that funny really, is it? But if you don’t laugh you will cry. That moment of madness just shows what kind of performance Gabriel had today.

It is really frustrating to watch, this is twice in one week we have taken a look at Arsenal players to cost the Gunners a vital points and ground in the title race. Each and every player should want to win and end this disastrous drought of having no Premier League in so many years, but they don’t, and to be honest, it’s frustrating and a disgrace for the Arsenal faithful.

It is certainly a performance to forget for Gabriel, it was embarrassing. We look at how Twitter reacted to his performance, and as expected some fans are really not happy.

As you can see, Arsenal fans were less than impressed with Gabriel’s performance and were quite ruthless on his overall display. Some people find strong criticism unfair and uncalled for, and sometimes it may be, but for Arsenal, they are desperate to end their title run, games like today will pay divalent on their title charge and it really does feel as if the Gunners will go another season without the grandest prize of them all.

Arsenal fans are calling for Rob Holding to start over Gabriel, and to be honest, I have to agree. The youngster has been immense whenever he plays in an Arsenal shirt and has bags of potential to fill and a lot more ability about himself.

The Gunners bottled two tough away days in the space of a week, they’re nine points off top, playing some woeful football and sitting here writing this I feel that’s another season down drain, and it’s only December.

‘Outstanding’ Twitter Full Of Praise For Everton Star vs. Manchester City

Everton picked up a vital point away at Manchester City on Saturday afternoon as they maintained a solid start to Premier League life under Ronald Koeman. They now sit 6th in the Premier League and look well built for a challenge for the European spots.

But the point they gained on Saturday was massively thanks to their man between the sticks, Maarten Stekelenburg, who astonishingly managed to save two penalties. Both of these penalty saves were made when Everton were in the lead, and although he did eventually let a goal in, it was his penalty saves that made the crucial contribution for Everton and earned them a point. This duo of saves made him only the 7th keeper in Premier League history to save two penalties in one game.

It wasn’t just penalties that the Dutchman saved though. Astonishingly he made a huge 7 stops, with WhoScored awarding him a match rating of 9.62. He deserved no less than that. Many questioned Foeman when Stekelenburg was signed and chosen to be the clubs new 1st choice goalkeeper after the Dutchman has had a few questionable spells in England. But Koeman’s trust in the stopper appears to be being repaid so far, with the keeper no doubt being the man of the match in this fixture.

Perhaps if there is to be one criticism of his performance against City (harsh I know) it would be his distribution. Too often he did not find a Everton player when distributing the ball, in fact less than half of his attempts found a teammate. This may be an area to work on for him if he is to win all of the fans over completely.

Here’s how Twitter reacted to Stekelenburg’s heroics on Saturday.

Everton had a lot of problems at the back last season, many of them came in their defensive personnel and after losing John Stones many fans feared it would get worse. But Koeman has made some good signings in Stekelenburg and Williams – whilst his management style has also helped plug the gaps in defence.

When Joe Hart became available late in the transfer window, many tipped Everton to pounce with doubts over Stekelenburg’s ability to be the number one for a club seeking European football. It is still early days but his performance on Saturday will at least help install more confidence in those fans that had doubted him.

Champions League Group by Group Breakdown

Greeting football fans from all across Europe, as you’re surely well aware the Champions League groups have been drawn and matches have started. If you’re the type that likes to sport a wager now and then, you may want to head down to the Betser football sportsbook (or your local shady bookie! But who does that anymore?) and get some bets in BEFORE the groups end, so you can extract the most value out of your prescience.

Group A

Arsenal and Paris Saint-Germain are the absolute class of this group that also features Bulgarian Champions PFC Ludogorets as well as Swiss club FC Basel. It would be an absolutely crushing upset for one of these top two squads to not advance. Picking between these two, we will go with Paris Saint-Germain as the pick here. Though PSG has lost mercurial goal scorer Zlatan Ibrahimovic, the French club is still loaded with world class talent at every position.

Group B

Group B is perhaps not the “group of death” but more like the “group of life.” Featuring Besiktas, Napoli, Benfica and Dynamo Kyiv — this looks like a group that could go any which way. Napoli finished 2nd in the Italian Serie A, and edges out Portuguese side Benfica in our mind. Sadly to say, none of the teams from Group appear to have a great chance to move on further in the tournament, as these clubs are relatively small compared to the Real Madrids and Bayern Munichs of the world. Our pick in group B will be Napoli.

Group C

If Group B is the group of life, Group C looks like the group of death. Both Manchester City and FC Barcelona are absolute powerhouses in country and continent. Celtic FC aren’t even half bad and could easily pull an unexpected result out of the hat. Our pick here is Barcelona, even though Man City has looked brilliant in the Premier League, we can’t pick against the Champions League legends from Spain.

 Group D

Group D is similar to Group A in that you can be nearly 100% sure that one of the top two teams will progress. In Group D those teams are Bayern Munich and Atletico Madrid. These two teams faced each other in the semifinals of last year’s Champions League with Madrid winning and moving to its 2nd Champions League final in 3 years. We expect much of the same this year, picking Atletico to narrowly edge out Bayern for the group.

Group E

Maybe the easiest group, we expect Tottenham Hotspur FC to prevail. Other teams in the group, AS Monaco, CSKA Moscow, and Bayer Leverkusen have the potential to upset Tottenham, but following the Spurs 2-0 win against Manchester City in league play, they’re looking like the class of Group E.

Group F

The reigning champs are in this group, and we’d feel foolish not to pick Real Madrid to come out of this group. Last we checked they still have a guy named Ronaldo, and that should be enough to win the group.

Group G

We said Group E might be the easiest group, but Group G has a chance to take that title. Leicester City, champions of the Premier League, are participating in this years Champions League and it’s difficult to know if they will continue their run of form. Competing against Portgual’s Porto, Brugge from Belgium and Copenhagen from Denmark, this group looks like Leicester City’s to lose. We’ll go with the lads from Leicester City.

Group H

Group H has one tier 1 team in Juve, two tier two teams in Sevilla and Lyon, and a fairly outclassed Croatian champion, Dinamo Zagreb. The easy pick here is Juventus, but if they were to slip up again Sevilla or Lyon, the Spanish or French clubs could easily snatch the group away from the Italians.

The games have already started, so head to the Betser football site and get it on!

Report: Arsenal Star Could Reject New Contract Because He Wants To Premier League Rival

According to a report in The Times on Monday night, Hector Bellerin could be set to reject a new 5-year contract offer extension at Arsenal as his preference is to join Pep Guardiola at Manchester City.

Barcelona have been the club most regularly linked with a move for the Spaniard, but if you believe the papers it may be Guardiola’s side that makes a successful move for him. Bellerin joined Arsenal as a teenager, opting to leave the Spanish club. It was a similar move to how Cesc Fabregas ended up at Arsenal, although Gunners fans will hope that with Hector, there is a different conclusion.

 

City though, are desperate for a full back of Bellerin’s calibre. On the right hand side of the defence they currently have the aging duo of Pablo Zabaleta and Bacary Sagna – it’s clear the improvement he would make to Manchester City’s team, especially because of the way that Pep places emphasis on his full backs in build-up play, Bellerin would thrive in such a role.

 

Bellerin was developed at Barcelona and Arsenal, so he has had a brilliant football education and because of that, good ball skills – a must for all Pep’s jigsaw pieces. Another huge asset of Hector’s is his blistering pace, often providing a safety barrier for Arsenal when other defenders are left behind. Most recently he demonstrated this with a quality last man tackle on Pedro in the clubs 3-0 win vs. Chelsea, but in his short time in the first team, Bellerin has already saved several points for his team because of his pace.

 

Personally I find it hard to believe that Bellerin – a player who has matured and excelled at Arsenal, would leave to join Manchester City. Yes Pep’s influence is massive, but the player loves London, he’s thriving at Arsenal and right now at least, there’s no real reason for him to leave. He has often made sly digs at the likes of Robin van Persie and Cesc Fabregas for joining English rivals and when publicly asked, he has always refuted suggestions that he may leave The Emirates any time soon.

 

Honeslty I expect Bellerin to sign a new 5-year contract with Arsenal this season. I think he sees his immediate future at Arsenal and although there may be a silent acknowledgement amongst the Arsenal fans that one day he may go back to Barca, everyone hopes that Arsenal will be the only English club he ever plays for. I also think that even if Hector would like to play for Barcelona, he doesn’t need to go and do it yet. A 5-year contract would put to bed the rumours for at least another 3 years, allowing him to keep improving. Arsenal no longer need to sell their star players and in Bellerin, aged just 21, they have a real asset, perhaps the most valuable at the club.

 

As an Arsenal fan I’m not going to pay much attention to this rumour, and after looking at the facts and quotes, it makes even less sense. I can’t see The Times being right this time.

‘He Was Superb’ Fans React To Spurs Midfielders Fantastic Performance Against Manchester City

Mauricio Pochettino’s Spurs were at their very best on Sunday as they managed to brush aside previously unbeaten table-toppers Manchester City in a thrilling game at White Hart Lane.

An own goal from Aleksandar Kolorov sent Spurs into the lead early on in the piece before Spurs doubled their lead later on in the first half with a low Dele Alli strike past Claudio Bravo. Erik Lamela had the chance to make it 3-0, but missed from the spot in the second period.

Spurs looked to press City from the start in the knowledge that playing out from the back is the Pep Guardiola way, particlulary looking to press Claudio Bravo in the Manchester City goal as he looked for a pass.

The high pressing helped Spurs to take all three points at White Hart Lane, as the team covered 118.8km throughout the ninety minutes, working tirelessly for the win.

One player that stood out for me as well as Spurs fans across Twitter was Victor Wanyama in the midfield, with many taking to Twitter to voice their opinions on Wanyama’s outstanding performance.

The Kenyan midfielder made some excellent tackles in the midfield on his way to earning the Sky Man Of The Match award on Sunday afternoon. He pressed the City midfield extremely well and his strength shone through in the 2-0 win.

Wanyama won six tackles as well as two aerial duels in his Man Of The Match performance, also racking up an 84% passing accuracy in Spurs’ fifth win of the season. The Kenyan also made one interception and recovered the ball nine times. Here is how fans reacted on Twitter to the midfielder’s performance.

Player Ratings: Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 Manchester City

Here are Fresh Football’s ratings for the top of table clash between Spurs and Manchester City at White Hart Lane.

Tottenham Hotspur

Hugo Lloris – 7

Brilliant save to deny Aguero 79 min and again to deny Iheanacho, good performance.

Kyle Walker – 7.5

Superb throughout, attacked the line well and was excellent defensively.

Toby Alderweireld – 8

Another terrific performance from Spurs’s consistent powerhouse. Bullied Aguero throughout and was a solid unit at the back.

Jan Vertonghen – 8

Commanding as always, same with Alderweireld, solid throughout.

Danny Rose – 7.5

Put a brilliant cross in to open the scoring after an own goal by Kolarov, brilliant at attacking the line and kept Sterling at bay.

Victor Wanyama – 8

Strong and powerful all game, bullied the central midfield giving Fernando / Fernandiniho no time on the ball, Rock solid.

Dele Alli – 9 (MOTM)

Alli scored Spurs’ second in the 36 minute after a brilliant finish, was efficient going forward all afternoon and backtracked when needed. Provided brilliant skill and link up play too.

Moussa Sissoko – 7.5

Superb defensively and offensively, most impressive tracking back when City looked dangerous.

Christian Eriksen – 8

Nearly scored a superb free-kick but his effort just went inches wide of the post. Brilliant throughout and looked very dangerous going forward.

Erik Lamela – 7.5

Missed his penalty after a good save by Bravo. Was dangerous going forward and deserved to score, caused City many problems.

Son – 8

Showed good movement and shot in opening 30 seconds. Force Bravo into a smart save in the 10th min after breaking away from the City defence. Grabbed a superb assist in the 36th minute and showed again why he is so important to this Spurs side.

Manchester City

Claudio Bravo – 5

Made a few good early saves to deny Son, could do nothing about the own goal and Alli’s goal, looked very shaky when passing out from the back, something which must have worried Guardiola.

Pablo Zabaleta – 4

Looked very lethargic during the game and was too slow for Spurs attacking threat.

Nicolas Otamendi – 4

Looked very shaky from the first minute, gave away a rash tackle on Alli after the young Englishmen went past him which saw Eriksen nearly score from the set piece. Not convincing at all.

John Stones – 6

Spuerb tackle on Son in the fourth minute to stop the Spurs forward having a shot at goal, was a brighter spark in a poor City defence, always looked to carry the ball out too which was promising.

Kolarov – 3.5

Scored an own goal in the 8th minute following a dangerous cross from Rose, an afternoon to forget.

Fernando – 4

Overrun in midfield and gave City nothing. Poor performance.

Fernandinho – 4.5

Gave away penalty 64 min after bringing down Dele Alli, was poor throughout and wasn’t able to dominate the midfield like he has been.

David Silva – 5.5

Could not make things happen like usual, City’s magician was over powered and sounded out but did miss a great opportunity in the early stages.

Raheem Sterling – 6

Worked hard as always and tried to make things happen, got in a battle with Rose but endured a frustrating afternoon.

Jesus Navas – 4.5

Dangerous cross in the third minute which was put right across the face of goal, apart from that he was a ghost for the afternoon.

Sergio Aguero – 6

Had a few good chances to grab a goal for City, but was bullied by the Spurs defence who were just to strong for him.

Subs;
Tottenham

Eric Dier – 7
Protected the defence well and helped Spurs see the game out.

Georges-Kevin Nkoudou – N/A

Vincent Janssen – N/A

Manchester City

Kelechi Iheanacho – 6

Should have scored in 73 min after a great chance.

Gundogan – 5

Had a few good touches but struggled to make an impact on the game.

Leroy Sane – N/A

5 Arsenal Players Named In The Team Of The Week: Liverpool, Tottenham & Man Utd Players Also Feature

Petr Cech – Arsenal

Although Cech wasn’t worked as much as others over the weekend, his professionalism shown through the whole squad on the Gunners 3-0 win over Chelsea. He made a few fantastic saves in the latter stages of the game with Michy Batshuayi being the best when he was through on goal. His calmness helped his back four massively, and the ex-Chelsea goalkeeper helped the Gunners coast to victory.

Hector Bellerin – Arsenal

Defensively, Bellerin has improved massively in the last 12 months and this once again showed against Chelsea on Saturday. Pedro was through on Arsenal’s goal, but Bellerin took charge and absolutely dismantled his fellow Spaniard for pace and recovered with an excellent tackle.

Bellerin kept Eden Hazard quiet all game, disposed play excellently and made inch perfect tackles whilst grabbing and assist for Theo Walcott’s goal.

Virgil Van Dijk – Southampton

Another solid performance by the Saints rock at the back, since his move to St Mary’s last summer he has been one of the most impressive defenders in England, with another sublime performance against West Ham showing his worth, he defended excellently and bullied Simone Zaza who didn’t get a sniff all game.

Laurent Koscielny – Arsenal

Koscielny must have been itching for revenge on Diego Costa who has often got the better of him, but to the Frenchman’s credit, he dealt excellently with the Chelsea man and was much stronger and determined that the forward for the 90 minutes.

Costa can usually bully his opponents but between Mustafi and Koscielny, Costa was left frustrated after being pocketed by the pair, with the latter getting some sweet revenge on Costa form past performances, Inch perfect display.

Ryan Bertrand – Southampton

Ryan Bertrand has all the tools to become a top left-back and he proved once again why in Saints victory over the Hammers, he was influential going forward as well as tracking back, helping in the build up play before Charlie Austin’s goal. The defender completed three key passes in the 90 minutes which just showed how good he was progressing forward.

Son Heung-min – Tottenham Hotspur

A player that nearly left White Hart Lane this summer is now a key man in Spurs superb form, he has once again made our TOTW with four goals in the last two matches. Son is full of confidence and is now starting to deliver on a consistent bases, he is picking up the ball and driving at defences whilst being a threat in the final third which he showcased once again at the weekend in another fine display.

Paul Pogba – Manchester United

Finally, Paul Pogba puts in a Man-of-the-Match performance in a dominating display over last seasons champions Leicester City. With Rooney dropping out of the side, Pogba was given a more advanced role and the whole team played at a much higher tempo with their main man Pogba able to dictate and control the game at his will, with the Frenchman also netting his first goal for Manchester United in a truly superb performance.

Phillipe Coutinho – Liverpool

Coutinho is another who has been superlative this season, he once again ran the show for his Liverpool side with two assists and one goal against a depleted Hull City side. Liverpool are a very dangerous outfit this season and if their Brazilian maestro can keep up his good work they will certainly fight for the title.

Alex Iwobi – Arsenal

The young Gunner has settled in to this Arsenal team and made the left wing spot his own. He was just as good as the likes of Alexis and Ozil on Saturday, highlighting his raw talent and the lads potential is huge. Aged just 20 and considering how much he has developed in the last 12 months, the sky is well and truly the limit for young Alex. Against Chelsea he tortured Ivanovic at right back, causing many Chelsea fans to call for the Serbian to retire.

Alexis Sanchez – Arsenal

Alexis is thriving in the number 9 role at Arsenal and he had another brilliant game against Chelsea. Hunting down Gary Cahill before giving Arsenal the lead was particularly impressive, but what I liked was his improved link up play. Many had doubted that Arsenal could play without Giroud because Alexis could not link the play as well, that was cetainly not the case.

Sergio Aguero – Manchester City

Back from suspension, Aguero again proved why he is perhaps the best player in the Premier League with an impressive brace against Swansea to ensure City maintained their 100% Premier League record. If this guy stays fit it is hard to see another team winning the league, he is just on another level.

Premier League Team Of The Week: 2 Liverpool, 2 Arsenal, 2 Watford & 1 Everton Player Feature

Jordan Pickford – Sunderland

Probably the busiest keeper of the weekend having to keep out an onslaught from the Spurs attack was superb throughout and deserved to be on the winning side.

The 22-year-old made more saves (8) than any other goalkeeper in the Premier League over the weekend.

Seamus Coleman – Everton

The Irish International scored a sublime solo effort against Boro with a striker-esque finish. Coleman attacked the line brilliantly and was always an outlet on the right-hand side whilst doing his defensive duties as usual.

That’s Coleman’s first goal of the season and with performances like that he will be sure to score a few more, he also made two tackles whilst helping his team out with six clearances.

Sebastian Prodl – Watford

This was “The battle of the buns” with one worthy winner in Prodl.

The Watford centre-back managed to keep the ever busy Zlatan Ibrahimović at bay and not giving him any time on the ball.

He was outstanding throughout and was an influence defensively, winning one major tackle on Ibrahimović as he looked destined to score after going through on goal.

The 6ft+ defender won most of his aerial duels and looked stronger than Zlatan, especially with his tackles, a fantastic performance.

Joel Matip – Liverpool

Very rarely will a team go to Stamford Bridge and dominate as much as Liverpool did on Friday night.

Liverpool’s defence were solid, they didn’t let Chelsea have any time on the ball and didn’t get dragged into a physical wrestling match with Diego Costa.

Instead, Matip was clever in his approach, he would often budge Costa to let him know he is there, which led to the Chelsea striker giving away possession and becoming frustrated.

Matip had a very professional and solid performance and was dominating in the air and also brilliant in possession just as much without.

José Holebas – Watford

For the second week running Holebas gets into our team of the week.

The consistent performer has carried on his splendid early form and once again showcased his fine abilities against the Red Devils.

He was very strong on and off the ball and gave United next to nothing on the right-hand side, a beast of a performance.

Jordan Henderson – Liverpool

Firstly, you have to say what a special goal that was.

A midfielder who doesn’t score many produced arguably goal of the month against the Blues at Stamford Bridge with a sublime hit from around 30 yards.

Henderson was solid and dominating in midfield; he ran the show and made both Matic and Kante look very lacklustre in the middle of the park.

Francis Coquelin – Arsenal

First things first, Francis Coquelin deserves huge credit for his performance against Hull City with the added pressure Granit Xhaka has brought to him.

Although Xhaka should be starting for the Gunners, Coquelin had his best game of the season against the Tigers in a complete performance showcasing why he should be in contention.

The Frenchman completed 98% of his passes against Hull, which is utterly perfect, and protected the back four superbly.

The Arsenal midfielder made four tackles and four interceptions in the 90 minutes, showing his worth to the Gunners side, a fantastic performance.

Andros Townsend – Crystal Palace

Crystal Palace ran riot against a very depleted Stoke City side yesterday afternoon.

The Palace winger was instrumental throughout and his blistering pace and skills were too much for the Stoke City defence to handle.

He scored his first Palace goal in style, after dribbling it away and blasting it into the back of the net from outside the box. Palace were all round fantastic, with Townsend being the best of the lot.

Kevin De Bruyne – Manchester City

Last week, we said KDB was playing with new freedom and found exhilarating form, he once again showcased this against Bournemouth and if he carries on will find himself a contender for player of the season.

His exquisite early season form continues as did his clinical presence in front of goal, KDB once again showed his deadly eye for goal as he scored another goal for City whilst also adding another assist to his tally this season.

Apart from scoring and assisting, the Belgian international created three clear-cut chances for City in their dominating win over the Cherries.

Alexis Sanchez – Arsenal

Alexis Sanchez continued to lead the Gunners attacking line playing in the number 9 role, days after an unconvincing performance there against PSG.

But, this time Sanchez looked back to his old ways, tormenting defenders and running at the Hull back line without fear in a brilliant display for the Gunners.

Arsenal’s magician scored Arsenal’s first goal in a bizarre scenario with Alex Iwobi feeling robbed of the goal after it hit Sanchez before finding the net.

Alexis went on to miss a penalty later on in the half but this didn’t stop him scoring an excellent goal in the second half and having an all-round brilliant display.

Islam Slimani – Leicester City

Slimani probably dreamt on Friday night about scoring a goal on his Premier League debut, instead, he scored two very well taken goals and looked very much comfortable in his new surroundings.

On top of his goals, he showed very promising signs of excellent link up play between the Foxes deadly duo Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez, which will excite Claudio Ranieri.

Grades (A-E): How Arsenal, Man City, Tottenham & Leicester Fared In the Champions League

The Champions League kicked off this week with four English teams in action. It was surprising to not see the familiar faces of Chelsea or Manchester United, but their poor Premier League performance last season saw them lose their places, with Tottenham and league winners Leicester City coming in, with the latter making their debut in the competition. Overall it was a pretty good gameweek for English teams, but here’s my grade for each of them.

Arsenal

Arsenal kicked off the Champions League group stage with an away game against the favourites for the group in PSG. Arsenal had bad memories of opening days in this competition, but good experiences in France. They started tragically, conceding in the 1st minute and after 5 minutes, fans feared they would be humiliated. Arsene Wenger’s decision not to include Granit Xhaka, Petr Cech and Olivier Giroud raised eyebrows, and only the omission of Cech appeared to pay off, with David Ospina keeping the team in the game at half time. Arsenal improved in the second half and PSG looked like they had tired, with the changes on the hour mark, Arsenal began to take control of the game and in the end, via a moment of quality from Alexis Sanchez, stole a point from under the noses of the French Champions. Whilst the performance was far from great, the result surely makes the Gunners favourites for the group and if they can play like they did in the last 30 minutes, you would fancy Arsenal to take all three points. The Gunners now need to ensure they don’t underestimate FC Basel and Ludogrets and they should ensure progression, top spot must now be the aim for Arsenal. B for result ‘-‘ for performance.

Grade: B-

Manchester City

Pep Guardiola negotiated the qualification stage of this competition with ease and it looked just as easy on Wednesday night when they hosted Borussia Mochengladbach. Under Pellegrini City have looked lacklustre in Europe but with Pep there is a confidence that they can go all the way. Sergio Aguero is in incredible form and his hat trick helped the team to a straightforward 4-0 win. I’m sure the rain delay was frustrating for manager and players, but it did not impact their performance, perhaps it did play a part in the away sides poor showing. Ilkay Gundogan made his first start for the club and looked really good, he could prove to be a top signing, though with Kevin De Bruyne and Fernandinho also in top form, it will be interesting to see how Pep fits all his superstars into the line up.

Grade: A

Tottenham

Tottenham returned to the Champions League in unfamiliar surrounding at Wembley. The fans turned up in their thousands, with the club breaking an English record for attendees at a European game. The party was soon stopped though as Monaco scored 2 early goals to silence the home crowd. Tottenham appeared to, just like Arsenal had previously, underestimate the French side, who have started the season in top form, topping the French league currently. Despite the poor level of the French league overall, Monaco have some top quality players and Spurs will need to ensure they do not underestimate them again when they head to France for the reverse fixture. Pochettino needs to reflect on this terrible start to what was perceived as an ‘easy’ group.

Grade: F

Leicester City

The dream continues. Leicester may not have started their Premier League defence in the best fashion, losing 2 of their first 4 games, but the club now need to enjoy what they earned last season – a European adventure. Because of their top seeding, Leicester were drawn into a favourable group and they took full advantage. Despite Club Brugge not being the hardest side, an away game in the Champions League is rarely easy, but Leicester made it look that way with a convincing 3-0 win in Belgium. With an away win in the bag, Ranieri will be confident of progressing in the group and with their main rivals, FC Porto drawing at home with Copenhagen, the English side now look as if they can actually top the group and they will certainly believe they can. What a start.

Grade: A*

Overall it was good to see a good performance from English sides on Gameweek 1. With Pep at Manchester City, there is a serious chance of an English side winning the competition and Leicester and Arsenal have both had positive starts too. You could expect Tottenham, despite this hiccup to still qualify, though the chances of them topping the group are now a lot slimmer.

The Best 4 Clubs In Transfer Market: Ft. Man City, Man Utd, Southampton and Leicester

We’ve been reviewing the best (and worst) teams to do business this summer. You can view 20th-17th, 16th-13th, 12th-9th, 8th-5th and your top four is below.

4 – Southampton

We kick off the top four with Southampton, who yet again faced an overhaul in the summer after losing manager Ronald Koeman and a couple of key players, the big loss being Sadio Mane to Liverpool (again). But under Claude Puel, Southampton have rebuilt smartly again.

The two brilliant additions for me are Sofiane Boufal and Pierre-Emile Højbjerg whom between them cost less than £30million. That is brilliant business considering they recouped £35million for Mane – the signing of Boufal replaced Mane and the addition of Hojbjerg strengthened the centre of their midfield. Although Southampton have struggled early on this season, I think with time Puel will get to know his squad and start producing good results on the pitch. At the moment a rotation player, I expect new signing Højbjerg to establish himself in the centre of midfield and play a key role for the team. Boufal, also with time, could really flourish and help turn the tide of bad results for the Saints.

3 – Leicester City

It was always going to be tought for Leicester City to keep hold of their best players after last season and ultimately, they are so high up in our list because of the fact that N’Golo Kante aside, they have managed to do just that. Although their start to the season has been poor, they have unquestionably done well to not only keep hold of Riyad Mahrez and Jamie Vardy, but also sign the likes of Islam Slimani, who has been scoring for fun in the Portuguese league for some time. It will take time for him and the likes of Mendy to adjust to life in the Premier League and even though they will not manage to achieve what they did last season, you would think that Leicester have done enough to ensure a stable season this time around whilst they explore the glamorous Champions League. They would surely be happy with qualifying from the Champions League group and finishing in the top half of the Premier League this time around.

2 – Manchester United

Three players from Manchester United featured in our top 10 signings of the summer. Paul Pogba, Eric Bailly and Zlatan Ibrahimović. Their fourth, Henrikh Mkhitaryan only narrowly missed out. United re-established themselves as a top force in Europe this summer with some head turning additions, predominantly that of Zlatan and the world record breaking transfer of Pogba. Although Zlatan and Bailly are the only two so far to have perhaps shown signs of justifying their signing, Pogba has enormous potential and that is undoubted. Perhaps the hype around his move to Manchester United was too much, in fact I’d say it definitely was. But Manchester United have the money and in Pogba they’ve (re)signed a player that can help take them to the next level. He is a unique and dynamic midfielder and he gives Mourinho options. Mkhitaryan, on the other hand may need more time than initially thought to adjust to the pace of the Premier League. Overall though, with no significant exits and so much quality coming in, including Mourinho, United fans must be delighted with the summer they’ve had.

1 – Manchester City

Pep Guardiola arrived with a lot of expectation at Manchester City and so far he has delivered on the pitch. Off the pitch he had a rather good start too, signing several top quality players. Although some may have expected more ready-made world class players, Pep has brought in several young players that could really do well in the future. The likes of Gabriel Jesus and John Stones immediately spring to mind, and in Nolito and Ilkay Gundogan, Pep brought in two more experienced players that were well suited to his system. With these young signings, Pep has ensured that even if he doesn’t stick around at City for a decade, he will have put the club in a great place for at least that amount of time. He has used his pull factor to lure some of the worlds best young talent in Stones, Gabriel and even Leroy Sane, who had suitors from across the globe. The reason City have pipped United to the top of the list is because they secured the most important signing of all, that of Pep Guardiola.

Player Ratings: Manchester United 1-2 Manchester City

Manchester United

David De Gea: 7 – Could not do much about the goals and made some key saves in the second half to keep his team in the contest.

Antonio Valencia: 7.5 – One of United’s best players in a difficult game. He did well to nullify the threat of Nolito for the most part and continues to look comfortable playing at right back.

Eric Bailly: 5.5 – The first game where Bailly has really struggled in a United shirt. Up against a big team he looked nervous, too easily beaten in the air for City’s first and a few bad challenges saw him pick up a yellow.

Daley Blind: 6 – Slightly better than Bailly but also looked uncomfortable for the most part and was to blame for De Bruyne’s goal perhaps. He did however make a few (3) tackles.

Luke Shaw: 6.5 – Spent too much time defending because of City’s dominance and that meant his attacking influence was limited.

Marouane Fellaini: 7 – One of United’s better players, putting in a midfield shift and helping disturb City, but ultimately struggled to get on the ball enough.

Paul Pogba: 6 – Poor game from the Frenchman, he really struggled to get into the game and considering the money United paid, he needs to turn up in the big games in the future.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan: 5 – Maybe this was why Mourinho hasn’t been starting him. The Armenian looked really out of sorts and was substituted at half time after failing to make any sort of positive impact.

Jese Lingard: 5 – Much like Mkhitaryan, Lingard struggled to make any kind of impact at all. Granted he struggled to because City had the ball for so long, but he needs to do more. I’m sure Martial will be back in in the next game.

Wayne Rooney: 6.5 – Really struggled in the first half as City dominated proceedings, but he grew into the game in the second half as United started to get more chances.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic: 7.5 – What a signing. He is incredibly lethal and took his only real chance of the game with a good volley. He was a handful and if United had more of the ball I’m sure he would have caused even more problems for City.

Subs

Marcus Rashford: 6.5 – A lot better than Lingard but still struggled with the final ball.
Ander Herrera: 7 – Helped United take more control in the game coming on for the invisible Mkhitaryan.
Anthony Martial – 6

Manchester City

Claudio Bravo: 5 – Woops. With all eyes on new boy Bravo between the sticks, he made a serious error for the Manchester United goal and looked uncomfortable throughout from corners and crosses as the South American keeper attempted to adapt to a new style of football in England. Amazingly his distrbution was one of the things to let him down. Needs work.

Bacary Sagna: 6 – Rarely tested as Lingard struggled to get on the ball. Looked a little uncomfortable once Rashford replaced Lingard though.

Nicolas Otamendi: 8 – Terrific from Otamendi. We are starting to see why City paid so much money to bring him to England. Completing 91% of his passes and shutting out United on several occasions, winning 5 tackles and 4 aerial duels. Otamendi comes close to MOTM with his performance.

John Stones: 6.5 – Not nearly as tidy in possession as his defensive partner, Stones only completed 76% of his passes. Still, he was pretty solid and was up against one of the best strikers in the league in Zlatan. He continues to learn and improve under Pep.

Aleksandr Kolarov: 6.5 – Decent performance from Kolarov, who seems a favourite of Pep’s. Trusted on the ball a lot and looked solid defensively.

Fernandinho: 7.5 – Looks great in Pep’s system. He does all the defensive work in midfield and that allows for City to play with two attacking midfielders alongside in Silva and KDB.

David Silva: 7 – Not the best we’ve seen from Silva, as he handed the limelight to KDB, but ultimately he helped City dictate the game in Manchester United’s half for much of the 90.

Kevin De Bruyne: 8.5 – KDB had struggled to make his impact under Pep so far, but today he really announced himself. Not only the goal, but he played incredibly well in midfield, running the show. The sides primary playmaker on the day managed a massive 6 shots.

Raheem Sterling: 6.5 – Not his best game by any means, Sterling struggled to make an impact as Shaw was defensively sound.

Kelechi Iheanacho: 7 – Continued his incredible goalscoring record at City with what turned out to be a vital goal. Not an extraordinary performance but ultimately, he gets in the right place at the right time.

Nolito: 6.5 – Apart from the early stages, Nolito struggled to make an impact as Valencia did a good job of keeping him quiet.

Subs

Fernando: 6
Leroy Sane: 6
Pablo Zabaleta: 6

Who Needs Him More? Everton and Liverpool Favourites To Sign £20million Outcast

Pep Guardiola has arrived at Manchester City and he is certainly showing a ruthless streak already with some of his selections. 

Amongst those players to be cast aside is Joe Hart. The 29-year-old hasn’t had the best of years has he? An abysmal Euro 2016 and now being dropped from the Manchester City side, Hart’s career is heading the wrong way and he seriously needs to jump ship. Amongst those interested in the services of Hart are Everton and Liverpool, according to Sky Sports who have Everton as slight favourites for Hart’s signature, with Liverpool close behind. They do not substantiate their claims that Liverpool are battling with Everton, but merely suggest that the two clubs are favourites. We tried to find any substance for Sky’s reasoning to place Liverpool as 2nd favourites, but there doesn’t appear to be any concrete sources linking the move yet. Sevilla have also been attributed with interest.

So who needs him more? Obviously if Hart were to move he would want to be guaranteed first team football as that is his reason for considering his future at City currently, according to the BBC.

First, the case for Everton – despite signing Maarten Stekelenburg this summer, who impressed in the Premier League’s opening weekend, the club still lack top quality between the sticks and I think it would be fair to say that Hart would provide an improvement on what the club have already got. Hart is also homegrown, an English international with a wealth of experience, that would be welcome to an Everton back five that lacked shape and discipline last season. Stekelenburg was impressive in his first outing, but does he have the ability to be consistently that good? His checkered past in the Premier League would suggest otherwise and it wouldn’t surprise me if Ronald Koeman was keen to bring in the England international considering his sudden availability.

What about Liverpool? Like Everton they have signed a new goalkeeper this summer, Loris Karius. They also tied down current keeper Simon Mignolet to a new long-term contract last season, not the clubs most popular decision it has to be said. I cannot realistically see Jurgen Klopp wanting to splash £20million on a goalkeeper when he has already committed to two players in that position in 2016. It remains to be seen how good Karius is, but surely Hart would be an upgrade on Mignolet? Even though Hart is prone to an error from time to time, I think that time does not come around as often as it seems to for Mignolet.

The problem for both clubs as they look to get rid of the errors that have haunted them in previous seasons, is that Hart is prone to an error himself. The stats show though, that Hart made 1 error leading to a goal last season, despite playing one less game, Mignolet made a catastrophic 4. Hart managed to made an impressive 1.91 saves per goal last season whereas Mignolet managed just 1.27. In fact, in the six areas we looked at when comparing the duo, it was only in disibution accuracy where the Belgian stopper came out on top. The Liverpool man was accurate with 66% of his distribution last season, Hart was behind on 59%.

The latest suggests that Hart would initially favour a loan move away from the club as he does not currently want to make a decision on where his long-term future lies. In terms of who would be more likely to make a loan bid, perhaps it would be Liverpool, who may be looking to temporarily cover for Loris Karius, although it seems Liverpool’s summer signing is making a return quicker than expected.

So the statistics are on Hart’s side, but Liverpool and Everton fans, I’d love to know if you would actually want Hart at your club? Is he good enough and worth the rumoured £20million asking price? Comment below or tweet us @FreshFootball to share your thoughts.

Player Ratings: Arsenal 3-2 Manchester City

These are Fresh Football’s player ratings for the pre-season friendly match between Arsenal and Manchester City.

Arsenal

Petr Cech – 7.5
To be honest he didn’t have much to do at all. Could do nothing really about Aguero’s goal and otherwise he was very commanding of his box and did what he had to do. Was also helpless to stop Iheanacho’s header creeping in. Great save at the death to deny Yaya Toure from equalizing.

Hector Bellerin – 6
Booked early on for going in studs up, but seemed to get the ball. As is often the case with Hector, he lacked intelligence with his final ball, but his pace and directness down the right always remains a threat. Off for Debuchy after 76 mins.

Rob Holding – 6
Confident and mature on the ball but gave it away by trying to do too much after 26 mins, that will worry Arsene. He also lost Aguero far too easily for Aguero’s opener. Off for Chambers after 45 mins.

Gabriel Paulista – 5
Didn’t get close enough to Sterling to stop him getting the cross in for Aguero’s opener. Looks worryingly nervous on the ball. Arsene may want to act quick in the transfer market as in the dying seconds of the game it looks as if Gabriel has seriously damaged his ligaments.

Nacho Monreal – 6.5
Whilst the centre of Arsenal’s defence lacks leadership and maturity, Monreal’s presence will be vital in the opening stages of the season. Off for Gibbs after 76 mins.

Franics Coquelin – 6
Coquelin failed to score when there was no goalkeeper, his shot blocked on the line. Good at breaking up the play but clearly lacks the ability to make a real difference. A limited midfielder who may struggle for minutes now Xhaka has arrived.

Granit Xhaka – 7
Should’ve had an assist as he put it on a plate for Oxlade-Chamberlain in the 18th minute but the Ox chipped wide. Lots of good little tackles and strong play throughout the first half. Off for Elneny after 45 mins.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – 5
Almost scored another quality lob in the 18th minute but should’ve done better. Made a decent explosive run that almost led t a goal, quiet otherwise. Off for Walcott after 45 mins.

Aaron Ramsey – 8
Playing as a number 10 Ramsey looked confident off the back of a very good European Championship. Often dropped deep and wanted to get involved. Great shot saved after 25 mins. Looks ready ahead of the new season. Off for Cazorla after 65 mins.

Alex Iwobi – 8
Really struggled to get into the game in the first half but finished brilliantly early on in the second to put Arsenal level. Was certainly much better in the second half when Arsenal started to dominate possession. Off for Campbell after 68 mins.

Alexis Sanchez – 8.5
Played as a striker, hungry and put pressure on the Manchester City defenders throughout. Certainly offers more as a lone striker than Theo can. Excellent free kick hit the bar, Hart was beaten. Intelligent assist for Walcott’s goal, Alexis is back! Off for Akpom after 78 mins.

Substitutes

Mohammed Elneny – 7.5
On for Xhaka after 45 mins. Really lively, less limited option than Coquelin, would love to see him alongside Xhaka but fear Arsene doesn’t like that. The Egyptian was really smart on the ball and clever under pressure.

Calum Chambers – 6.5
On for Holding after 45 mins. Not really tested much but he has physically improved over the summer. His on the ball ability will appeal to Arsene.

Theo Walcott – 7.5
On for Oxlade-Chamberlain after 45 mins. Decent cross to pick out Iwobi for Arsenal’s first goal. Looked more comfortable on the right wing and forced a good save from Hart in the 64th minute. Scored a lovely lob after a great interchange with Alexis Sanchez.

Santi Cazorla – 5
On for Ramsey after 65 mins. Came on to play in the number 10 role but struggled to make an umpact. Arsene has said previously that he isn’t physically fit enough for the season yet so I couldn’t expect him to start next weekend. Caught in possession and that led to City’s 2nd goal.

Joel Campbell – N/A
On for Iwobi after 68 mins.

Mathieu Debuchy –N/A
On for Bellerin after 76 mins.

Kieran Gibbs – N/A
On for Monreal after 76 mins.

Chuba Akpom – N/A
On for Alexis after 78 mins. Managed to score another tap in, always in the right place!


Man City

Caballero – 5
Zabaleta – 6
Fernando – 5
Kolarov – 6
Clichy – 5
Delph – 6
Fernandinho – 6.5
Silva – 5
Aguero – 7.5
Sterling – 7
Nolito – 6

Substitutes

Hart – 4
Sagna – 5
Navas – 5
De Bruyne – 6.5
Yaya Toure – 4
Iheanacho – 6
Adarabiyo – 3
Tasende – N/A
Garcia – N/A
Zinchenko – N/A

How Good Is Manchester City’s £27million Summer Signing? We Analyse

Manchester City have officially confirmed the signing of Brazilian sensation Gabriel Jesus for a fee of £27 million from Brazilian club Palmeiras, the exciting youngster has signed a five-year-deal with the club but will stay in his native country with Palmeiras until January 2017. Pep Guaridola’s era is in full flow and the former Blaugrana manager has signed some of the most promising talent in world football. We have already covered what the German sensation Leroy Sane will bring to the club, so I take a look at how Jesus will fit into the squad from 2017, and what he will bring to the Etihad Stadium.

Individual Brilliance

The Blues won the race for the 19-year-old’s signature fighting off competition from Spanish giants Barcelona which in itself is considered a major achievement and just shows what one phone call from Guardiola can do. The new Blues boss is known for having a young squad and has certainly injected youth into the ageing City squad. Experts in Brazil can barely contain their excitement when talking about Jesus, saying the sky is the limit, he is the most exciting youngster to come out of Brazil since Neymar. But, why? The versatile winger can play along the forward line in any position and has elegant style to his play which influences in him oozing brilliance.

Jesus, like compatriot Brazilian star Gabigol have quite high expectations coming out of Brazil and both players will soon find themselves playing in Europe, the comparisons for both players are obvious, the press have gone straight to Barcelona star Neymar, which is almost inevitable.

Jesus possesses magnificent artistic style in his play, his positioning for someone so young is superb and he always wants to put himself in goal-scoring positions, although his stature is quite weak, he is certainly a warrior which of course comes with the “street football” he has adapted from South America, a warrior on the ball and will fight for it if needs be, something Guardiola will be happy with, especially given the physicality of the Premier League.

The youngster comes to England with massive expectations with a high price tag too, but I feel he will thrive from it, a natural born true goal-scorer, possessing beautiful skills with end product is something the youngster has mastered with ease, and being of thin, light stature that certainly hasn’t stopped his progression in his early career.

His versatility will be a huge plus for City, as mentioned; his best position is playing from the left of midfield in a 4-3-3 but has also just moved into a centre forward position, where he is also showing very impressive performances.

Not all wingers have a good goal to game ratio, but this is another strength the youngster will bring, Jesus has scored 15 in 19 games to date this year and will look to improve his impressive record with the Brazilians whilst on loan there until January.

The new City man boasts supremacy, often using his quick feet and trickery to mock defenders, his style of majestic foot work and step overs, followed by rolling the ball to each foot before send his opponent elsewhere is illustrious.

Not just a goal-scorer, a creator too, using his hawk eye vision with admirable passes with different techniques, outside the foot, no look pass, you name it Jesus has tried it, and often rather than not succeeded.

Not every modern day winger has exquisite vision and often the number 10’s will take that into their path, but this is another trait Jesus carries, his awareness to pick out his team-mates and play pin point passes is quite unique for someone so premature.

He is also fearless; not intimidated in a head to head battle with his opponent, whether they are big and strong or quick.

Concerns

Like most, the major concern is how he will cope with demands of the Premier League, although he has shown great fighting ability, English football is like no other and it could be a concern for Manchester City, especially as Jesus is just 19-years-old.

Raheem Sterling can be deemed selfish by some, this could also be assumed because of Jesus’s style of play at times, he is still very early on in his career and like most flair players, he wants to showcase his abilities, but in a Guardiola styled team, he’ll soon become a good team player and drop the solo attitude.

A concern could certainly be taking the jump and leaving Brazil too early, for example, Neymar waited until he was 21-years-old and guaranteed game time before moving to Barcelona were he has become one of the best players in the world, the attacker’s progression will only resume by playing regularly and at a club like City, his development has been rapid and taking the jump so early, the Blues may not be able to guarantee such game time demands.

What the experts say

The Brazilian sensation is the best talent coming out of Brazil, experts in South America say, known for his work ethic, speed, technical alibies and more. The former Brazilian king Ronaldo has hailed him for future success not only at club level, but nationally too.

The legend said “I am a fan of his, I watch him and I see myself when I was younger, I see the similarities. He is very young and already has had a lot of success and so much responsibility; he has a footballing career ahead of him. We are already loving what he is doing”.

Another impressed with the star attraction is Palmeiras under-17 coach Bruno Petri.

“He will become a major player in Brazilian football, and also the Selecao, if they have patience, he is a boy who is easy to speak with and work with and who is different to the others in the question of training, always giving more than 100 per cent.”

Where will he fit in at City?

Guardiola has opted with a 4-2-3-1 system in pre-season thus far, the formation used may be the same formation they will use in the new season but there is still time for testers before the Premier League kicks off.

When Jesus arrives once the season has finished in Brazil, I feel he will play wide left in the three behind the striker, but as mentioned can be used in all front four positions which will give Guardiola plenty of options.

The Brazilian international will bring a very good offensive option for City, deploying him where he is needed but will certainly hurt teams in either position he plays, he is joining the side half way through the season and may not walk into the first team, especially if the likes of Sane, Nolito and Sterling all hit fine form.

City have landed themselves one of the most exciting prospects in world football and in time he will become an effective key player for them, although he may not light up the scene straight away, he is a player the City faithful should be a very enthusiastic about, under the majestic Guardiola, he could become one of the best wide players in the world.

3 Reasons Manchester United Will Finish Ahead Of Manchester City This Season

The Manchester rivalry is going to be back to it’s best this season with the arrivals of Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola this summer, but who will come out on top? Pep Guardiola has been dubbed the best manager in world football, but he has never played in the Premier League and in Manchester City, he has inherited a completely different project. Here are three reasons why United could reclaim bragging rights this season.

1 – Jose Mourinho

For all of Pep Guardiola’s quality, the Premier League is a different monster altogether. You cannot afford to not be at your best for any game, or these lowly Premier League teams will punish you. The advantage United have over City is they have a manager who already knows the league and although he collapsed last season at Chelsea, he won the league comfortably the season before. Mourinho is a respected Premier League manager and he has years of top level experience. Surely he will learn from last years failures and become an even better manager. At Manchester United he has all the tools to go and become the manager he has always wanted to be, I can’t see him getting this one wrong. In contrast I can see Pep being a bit naive, believing in his philosophy and not adapting enough to beat the lower sides, who all have weapons of their own. Take Watford for example, when on form Deeney and Ighalo can cause huge problems for teams like City. Mourinho is wise to all of these threats and you’d expect his defensive tactics to shut out the threats of the sides who often slip under the radar.

It is worth remembering that traditionally Mourinho does very well in his first couple of seasons, it takes a few seasons for the cracks to begin to spread.

Report: Manchester City Set To Meet €17.7m Release Clause For Attacker

Manchester City will certainly be active in the transfer market this summer and now they appear to be turning their attentions to La Liga for reinforcements. 

According to The Sun Pep Guardiola wants to sign 29-year-old Spanish international Noltio. The very skilful winger has had a very good season with Celta Vigo and earned himself a call-up to the Spanish squad for Euro 2016.

Manchester City are seeking the availability of Nolito this summer and would have to pay the £14 million release clause in his contract to secure the Spanish International’s signature.

Nolito is no stranger to Pep Guardiola and the manager is a huge fan of the player, the two worked together in Guardiola’s first two seasons at Barcelona and it is being reported the new City manager wants to be reunited with him at City this summer.

Nolito left Barcelona to join Benfica after being sounded out of the first team and making just two appearances, his impressive rise saw him return to Spain two years later to sign with Celta where he has scored 39 goals in 100 appearances.

His impressive goal-scoring record caught the eye of the Spanish national manager as he has now earned 10 caps scoring four goals and started Spain’s opening game at Euro 2016.

The underwhelming form of City’s stars Jesus Navas and Raheem Sterling could see Nolito slot into the first team and give Guardiola great options on the wing.

We pay close attention to how Nolito compares with City’s record signing Sterling. The English winger cost City £49 million last summer after he left Anfield for the Etihad. Nolito has had a superb season for Celta and managed to score 0.44 goals per 90 minutes compared to Sterling who managed 0.28. Nolito once again shows why he is so in demand this summer after contributing to 0.25 assists which is once again superior to Sterling who contributed to just 0.09. Wingers have many aspects to their game, and one of them is to create chances. Nolito, who was phenomenal last season created 2.19 chances per 90 minutes which is fantastic for a forward player. Sterling however managed just 1.64 which is still quite impressive for the 21-year-old winger. Noltio cleans up a full house with total attack score, his astonishing season sees him manage a score of 26.02 which helps him come out on top of Sterling who scores 20.41.

Barcelona were desperate to bring him back to the Nou Camp last season but any proposed deal fell through, and now it seems Manchester City are in poll position to land their target.

Nolito’s low release clause has caught the eye of many clubs including City, Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur and a good performance at the Euros could trigger bids from more than just City, so Pep may want to act on the clubs interest sooner rather than later. If City do firm up their interest with a formal bid they will be confident that the Pep factor will convince Nolito to head to the blue side of Manchester over other interested clubs.

Report: Manchester City On Verge Of Completing £90million Double Deal

Manchester City are expected to complete a £90million double deal in the coming weeks. Pep Guardiola has already signed Ilkay Gundogan but it seems he is about to make two more big money signings.

The first of which looks set to be for Schalke winger Leroy Sane. The young German international is set to seal a £40million move to Manchester City after Euro 2016, according to The Sun. The report even goes as far as to say that a £40million has been agreed. However it seems as if the newspaper jumped the gun on this one with Schalke telling Sky Sports that no deal is in place.

“The story is incorrect, nothing has changed with Leroy Sane,” a Schalke official told German newspaper Bild. But despite the German club ruling out that a deal has been reached, it is clear that Pep has identified Sane as a possible addition to the City midfield.

Sane is just 20 years old and is in the Germany squad for this European Championships. Upon completion of that tournament it is expected that the player will seal a move away with City now favourites. Despite his tender age Sane managed 8 goals and 6 assists in 23 Bundesliga starts and 10 further substitute appearances.

 

As well as signing a top winger, Pep also appears to be in the market to strengthen his defence and he looks ready to spend big. Manchester United were favourites to sign Everton’s John Stones in March, but now their neighbours appears to be set to sign the young defender. But they’ll have to spend big with reports suggesting Stones will cost City a huge £50million.

A clear strength of Stones is his aerial ability, highlighted by his 67.35% success in aerial duels. He also has an impressively low fouls committed rate (just 0.45 per 90 minutes). But this lack of aggression could also highlight his weaknesses. His stats of just 1.31 tackles and 1.85 interceptions per 90 make for grim reading. Although Guardiola is searching for a ball-playing central defender, which is just what Stones is, the Englishman will have to develop a nastier side to his game to become a player that can cope with all the strikers the Premier League will throw at him. To justify his price-tag of £50million, he needs to become world class, and quick.

Pep is also thought to be heavily interested in Aymeric Laporte who looks set to leave Athletic Bilbao this summer. Alongside Stones, Laporte will help Pep create his new look defence. Despite the club previously spending big money on Nicolas Otamendi and Elaquim Mangala and captain Vincent Kompany still at the club, Pep’s priority appears to be to build his new style of football from the back with the planned additions of these two young defenders. The age of Stones and Laporte (both 22) also implies that unlike his spell in Germany, Pep may be sticking around in England for the long-term.

Manchester City Set To Beat Arsenal To Incredible €75million Signing

According to Sky Sports news Manchester City are in advanced talks with Borussia Dortmund over the signing of striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

The Gabon international is valued at €75million (£58.5m) and talks have escalated over the last few hours with the possibility of Aubameyang joining Pep Guardiola at City this summer.

Aubameyang has always said to have his heart set on a move to Spanish giants Real Madrid after a promise with his grandfather, but the Bundesliga Player of the Year is also open to playing in the Premier League and may have his head turned by City who are under a new era with the incoming Pep Guardiola.

Aubameyang once again showed the world why he is one of the best strikers last season scoring an impressive 25 goals in 29 Bundesliga games, only Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski managed more.

Since his move from St Etienne to Dortmund in 2013, Aubameyang has managed 54 goals in 94 games and also managed 20 goals in 49 games at international level for Gabon.

The Etihad Stadium hierarchy has promised Guardiola a significant overhaul for when he takes over in July. City under achieved massively last season and were lucky to secure top four, Guardiola who is one of the best managers in the world will certainly look to better them for next season and will look to potentially secure their first ever Champions League win something Guardiola failed to do with Bayern Munich.

Aubameyang looks set to be the second high-profile signing for City this summer, with both players coming from Borussia Dortmund after they captured the signing of Ilkay Gundogan last week.

Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool have all enquired about Aubameyang in the past but he looks set on a move to City this summer, with the Manchester club ready to make a big money move were they will certainly use their financial power and blow the other interested parties out the water.

Manchester City are certainly not short of strikers, they have the up and coming star Kelechi Iheanacho who has been superb since his break through to the first team, City also have one of Europe’s best striker’s in Sergio Aguero who has scored 102 goals in 150 games since his move to City in 2011.

Did you see? Pep Guardiola eyes 3 signings from Arsenal

So how do two of the best strikers in Europe compete? Not surprisingly Aubameyang and Aguero are inseparable with goals scored per 90 minutes after both managing 0.91. Aubuameyang has had a prolific season and also contributed to assist’s managing 0.18 which is 0.10 better than current City striker who managed just 0.08. Both strikers are more than just goalscorers, they’re world class team players too. Aguero, who has been inspirational in City’s success has managed a impressive score of 0.91 with key passes which is superior to Aubameyang who also managed a score of 0.87. The two players in mention are among the best in Europe, if both players are in one side next season the strike force at City will be devastating. Aubameyang has created 1.06 chances which is just astonishing for a number 9 but Aguero also impresses although he is behind with 0.99. Both players are top quality but it is Aguero who nudges Aubameyang to total attack score managing 44.50 with Aubameyang in second with 35.73 [Stats via Squawka]

Manchester City are lucky to have a striker of Sergio Aguero’s calibre, but to have two in one team will be deadly. City will be very lucky to pull this deal off with Aubameyang having his heart set on a dream move to Madrid. Guardiola’s era is in full flow and he will instantly become a fans favourite if he manages to pull this deal off. A season to forget last season, but the coming years are exciting for City fans with their new project. Guardiola will be looking to build a Champions League winning club and that is exactly what he could do if he continues to bring in players of this calibre.

However there are conflicting reports late tonight that suggest City have confirmed to a reporter that they have no interest in signing Aubameyang at this time. Perhaps agent talk again?

Reports: €50m World Cup Winner To Choose Between Man Utd & Man City

Real Madrid may be willing to part with one of their star players this summer according to reports in Spain, and both Manchester clubs are keen on snapping him up.

After helping Real Madrid to another Champions League title this season, Toni Kroos could be set to embark on a new challenge in the Premier League. But who is most interested, and who has the better chance of signing him?

Manchester United

Jose Mourinho appears desperate to bring his former player Kroos to the club but will face an uphill struggle due to the clubs lack of Champions League football.

Kroos thrives in a deep-lying midfield role and managed 10 assists in 32 La Liga games. He could be the clubs new dictator and really be the central world class player that United currently lack. Morgan Schneiderlin has been unconvincing, Ander Herrera inconsistent and Bastian Schweinsteiger consistently injured. Kroos would be the perfect conductor for Mourinho’s new look side.

Manchester United have already made contact to sign Kroos, according to reports, but their efforts have so far been unconvincing and they’ll need to do more to persuade the player to want to join.

 

Manchester City

Despite the signing of Ilkay Gundogan, Pep Guardiola wants to bring in another top quality central midfielder, according to the Manchester Evening News. They say that Toni Kroos is that man and to make way for him, Fernando will be sold.

Valencia and Villarreal want Fernando for £12million whilst Yaya Toure could be set to reunite with Roberto Mancini with strong interest from Inter Milan.

Guardiola could create his perfect midfield platform with Kroos, alongside Gundogan, a move that would automatically make City the pass masters of England.

The chance to be part of Pep’s revolution at the Etihad will surely appeal to Kroos. He has the chance to play in England, with a Champions League club and under one of the best managers in the world. It is those factors which currently have City as favourites to sign the German, though we all know the persuasive powers of Mourinho, his former manager, could change that.


 

After winning the Champions League with Real Madrid again, it is possible that Kroos will feel he has done all he can at the Spanish club and with all the money and managers moving to England, Kroos must be tempted to follow suit. Time will tell if he will push for a move this summer but should City or United make concrete bid then a transfer looks more likely than ever.

Make Way For Signings: Guardiola Set To Axe These 3 Manchester City Stars

The Pep Guardiola era starts next season and the former Bayern Munich manager will be very busy this summer and certainly look to add to the squad who just scraped top four. Gundogan has already been announced as their first signing with plenty more players likely to be signed. Guardiola will look to strengthen many areas of the City squad which seems quite depleted . Some players will be forced to leave to save their own career, playing time especially could be limited for some players at City next season so we take a look at three players who will face the axe following Guardiola’s arrival.

1 – Yaya Toure

Yaya Toure has been crucial for City in recent seasons and has helped them win two Premier League titles and an FA Cup. Toure started to show his age this season however and has come under strong criticism for his lazy and sluggish performances and his inability to keep up with play.

His under-performing season is likely to cost Toure dearly with Guardiola almost certain to grant a departure for him this summer.

The 33-year old Ivory Coast international has been one of the best midfielder’s in Europe but his lacklustre performances have not gone unnoticed this season and his form especially was a reason for City’s struggles.

It is not all doom and gloom for Toure this season, he played 33 league games and still managed to show his quality in patches. Toure managed 1.51 key passes per 90 minutes which is still very impressive for a midfielder. Toure played as a number 10 or in a deeper role through the season for City and made 1.04 tackles which is once again impressive on the eye. Toure is great going forward and helping the attack just as much as he helps defensively playing in the two. Toure managed 0.19 assists and 0.23 goals per 90 minutes for City this season which is above average for a midfielder, especially one who has had an off season compared to recent years.

Toure signed for City in 2010 and has made 192 appearances for City scoring 54 goals but his six-year spell in England is likely to come to an end this summer with Inter Milan the likely destination.

Pep Guardiola coached Toure for Barcelona in his time with Spanish giants and it is thought his relationship with the new manager is some what sour.

The four-time African Footballer of the year left Barcelona in 2010 after Guardiola sounded Toure out of the first team. After the announcement of Guardiola’s imminent arrival, Toure’s agent Dimitry Seluk said “I think Yaya will be leaving the club” with the pairs bad relationship being widely reported.

Guardiola has already signed Ilkay Gundogan who will certainly be a starter for City, he is likely to partner Fernandinho in central midfield with the likes of Raheem Sterling, Kevin De Bruyne, David Silva all to be ahead of Toure to play behind striker Sergio Aguero.

Toure has one year left on his contract and will not be short of clubs wanting his signature this summer with Inter Milan and two Chinese clubs Shanghai SIPG and Jiangsu Suning all interested.

Gossip: Man City To Seal €50m Deal, Liverpool To Sell Coutinho & Southampton Close In On Signing

The transfer window is now kicking into gear with a couple of completed deals already, Fresh Football will bring you all the gossip and breaking news throughout the busy summer period. We take a look at some rumours that are flying about this afternoon.

Calum Chambers heading back to Southampton (Daily Mirror)

According to the Daily Mirror Calum Chambers is on Southampton’s radar this summer with the club looking to sign the defender on a one-year loan deal. It is being reported Arsene Wenger has been very reluctant to send out his versatile defender, but after rebuffing previous attempts from The Saints to bring their academy product back to St Marys’s, Wenger now feels Chambers needs game time in order to fulfil his potential and take the next step of his career.

21-year-old Chambers showed his defensive abilities recently helping England secure their first Toulon Tournament title since 1994 and more noticeably being picked for the “team of the tournament”.

Wenger is only likely to sanction a move for Chambers this summer if Arsenal sign a senior defender with Medhi Benatia and Kalidou Koulibaly both reported targets for the Gunners.
Chambers, who joined Arsenal for £16 million in 2014, has only played 35 games for the Gunners scoring one goal. The Saints will be very keen on Chambers and his versatility to play right-back, centre-back and even as a holding midfielder.

Arsene has claimed many times he sees his future as a centre-half and now want’s the young defender to gain much-needed experience. Chambers, who is a ball playing defender, is seen as a long-term replacement for Mertesacker, although he has only managed 12 games this season his tackle’s won ratio is incredible managing 2.09 per 90 minutes compared to Mertesacker who managed just 1.06. Standing at 6ft tall Chambers also impresses with aerial duels won after winning 3.39 which is one again more superior to Mertesacker’s score of 2.29. Although Chambers has hardly played his defence score is sublime, scoring a total 22.25 which one again put his ahead of team mate Mertesacker who managed just 14.68.

Arsene sees Chambers long-term future at Arsenal, but without guaranteed minutes Chambers will need a loan move to hopefully fulfil his bright potential.

Laporte set to complete €50million Manchester City switch (Guardian)

According to The Guardian Manchester City are ready to pay the €50m (£39m) release clause in order to sign Aymeric Laporte from Athletic Bilbao.

Pep Guardiola sees central defence as a priority for City this summer and they are prepared to spend big on Laporte in order to get their man, the French International is just 22-years old and already thought of as one of the best young central defenders in Europe.

Laporte has been ruled out until August with a broken leg and dislocated ankle and will miss the Euro’s with France this summer, but this has not put City off the prospect of signing him.

Laporte has already played over 120 games in La Liga and his impressive defensive abilities have caught the eye of most teams around Europe most noticeably Barcelona, but it is now likely Manchester City will pursue their interest in Laporte and land their man.

Manchester City are still trying to strengthen their defence with question marks constantly raised over club captain Vincent Kompanys long term fitness issues.

Eliaquim Mangala and Nicolas Otamendi have both been brought in by City to toughen up their defence but it hasn’t gone as well as they hoped and both players have failed to really nail down a position. Laporte will be brought in as a hopeful starter for City and if Kompany can stay fit that will likely be the partnership, with Mangala and Otamendi’s futures at the club in doubt.

The likelihood is Laporte will partner Kompany in central defence so we take a look at how the two have compared this season. Something that will impress City is the amount of tackles Laporte has won, manging 1.47 per 90 minutes. His opponent Kompany is not too far behind with 1.06. Aerial duels are a real factor to being a great defender, especially in a tough league. Kompany, who stands over 6ft show’s why he is thought of so highly, winning 85.37% of his aerial duels. Laporte, although he hasn’t won as much as Kompany still shows his aerial presence winning 69.86%. Kompany has been one of the most impressive defenders to grace the Premier League in recent seasons managing to win 58.82% of his total duels which just beats the impressive Laporte (54.19%).

Manchester City look destined to sign their long term target after beating off interested from European giants, the fee being paid will of course raise expectation but Laporte looks destined to fulfil his potential.

 

Philippe Coutinho wanted in Paris (Liverpool Echo)

According to the Liverpool Echo French Champions PSG are very interested in signing Brazilian ace Philippe Coutinho this summer. Coutinho has once again had an impressive season for Liverpool and more noticeably since Jurgen Klopp’s arrival and has caught the eye of PSG with the club ready to pursue their interest this summer.

It is understood PSG have already sounded out Coutinho’s representatives about swapping life in England for France and it is believed Liverpool are also aware of their interest in the 23-year old.

No official approach has been made for Coutinho, but it is certain he is on PSG’s radar this summer as they look to strengthen their squad to compete more fiercely for the Champions League.

Coutinho signed a five-year contract with Liverpool in February 2015 and it is understood Liverpool will fight to keep their playmaker and rebuff any attempts from clubs to sign him. Coutinho has been influential for Jurgen Klopp in the second half of the season and the player himself has found some excellent form with the manager clearly desperate to keep hold of him. The lack of any European football whatsoever at Liverpool next season will make it hard for Klopp to convince the player to stay, especially with the likes of PSG interested.

PSG ace Angel Di Maria has thrived since his arrival in France, after a disappointing spell at Manchester United. Coutinho would certainly be brought in to link up with the delightful attacker. Di Maria has had a sublime season and has been a key player in PSG’s title dominance. He has contributed with 0.81 assists per 90 minutes which is far better than Liverpool’s Coutinho who has managed just 0.23. Di María also comes out on top with chances created with 4.15 which is brilliant; Di María has been one of the most influential wingers/playmaker in Europe this season, Coutinho who has shone in the Premier League has managed just 2.21. The bonus with both of these players is they don’t just help create chances or assists. They also contribute with goals: Di María swoops a clean house once again coming out on top to Coutinho after managing 0.42 goals per 90 minutes which is slightly better than Coutinho who manages 0.36.

Coutinho may not yet be at the level of Di Maria but he is still a top quality player and aged just 23, has time to improve further.

If PSG are to sign Coutinho this summer they will certainly have a fight on their hands, with long-term admirers Manchester City still keen on the midfielder if he was to become available.

 

Manchester City Still Plan To Complete €30m Deal, Despite Serious Injury

Borussia Dortmund have already lost one star player before the season has ended and now it seems that Ilkay Gundogan may also be leaving the Signal Iduna Park this time for Manchester City.

On Tuesday the club announced that captain Mats Hummels will leave Dortmund and re-join Bayern Munich in a move that will anger fans as it is the third time recently that Bayern have poached one of their elite players. Mario Gotze and Robert Lewandowski have jumped ship for Bayern and Hummers is the latest player to leave.

Midfielder Gundogan has been a long-term transfer target for Bayern manager Pep Guardiola and with the Spaniard leaving at the end of the current campaign to go to Manchester City he may well look at Gungogan being one of his first signings at his new club.

It will be stay or go this summer as Dortmund have given the 25-year-old an ultimatum, either sign a long term deal or be sold. According to reports in the German media, Gundogan has suffered a serious knee injury which could halt any potential move to City.

Dortmund’s CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke commented on the situation saying:

“I have spoken to him, he’s very down after another serious injury.

“He knows we’ll stand by him.

“There are two options, which we have discussed with Ilkay for a while.

“Either he leaves or he stays and extends his contract, but it must be long-term.”

If Gundogan leaves for City he will join a number of high-profile midfielders at the club, here we compare the German international to those already at the Etihad.

Gundogan is an all round midfielder and can operate in a number of positions either defensively or in a more attacking role. This season he has operated as a deep lying midfielder alongside Julian Weigl and chances of breaking forward have been limited.

Despite this, Gundogan has managed to get on the score sheet three times in all competitions mainly being used as a player who keeps possession well and sets up the attack for the likes of Marco Reus and Henrikh Mkhitaryan to  push forward. In the Bundesliga, Dortmund

In the Bundesliga, Dortmund enjoy a lot of possession and average 60.5% in all games. City are not far behind that figure in the Premier League with 55%. It would suit Gundogan’s game to help dominate the ball much like the teams Guardiola has managed in the past have done.

Compared to the other central midfielders in City’s squad, Gundogan fares well. He has scored three goals in all competitions which is more than both Fabian Delph and Fernando. Fernandinho and Yaya Toure both have five and six goals respectively but Toure has been operating in a more attacking role.

Dortmund have been excellent in the league this year and have out scored Bayern despite losing the league title to them. Gundogan has been one of the main men for a number of years for Dortmund firstly under Jurgen Klopp and this season under Thomas Tuchel. It would be a huge blow for the club if both Gundogan and Hummels leave having been the backbone to the clubs success down the years. City however would be getting a technically accomplished midfielder who is just as happy sitting in front of the back four directing play as he is pushing forward and creating chances for the likes of Sergio Aguero and Kevin de Bruyne.

‘Just Wow’: Manchester City Fans Amazed By New Facilities

Manchester City’s meteoric rise in English football has been aided by a huge cash injection from it’s owner, Sheikh Mansour. The money has enabled them to attract top class talent to their club and win a number of domestic trophies over the last few years, including the FA Cup and the Premier League title.

Whatever your view is on Manchester City’s money is, their affluent owner is trying to make sure that their success will be long term. Today, City’s brand new training academy was unveiled, and it is stunning. The £200m facility has wowed the footballing world, including Lionel Messi, who was shown around by Pablo Zabaleta. Whether or not Manchester City’s money is helping or hindering English football on the pitch, off the pitch, building facilities like this can only be positive for our game.

Here’s how City fans reacted to the new complex:

‘I Can’t Believe It’: Man City Fans React To Defender’s Rare Goal

Manchester City strolled to a 3-0 win over Southampton at St. Mary’s as they moved within six points of league leaders Chelsea. The game wasn’t quite as straight forward as the scoreline suggests, as Sergio Aguero picked up a booking for diving and Eliaguim Mangala was sent off for two bookable offences. Although there was nothing controversial about Mangala’s red card, Aguero will feel very hard done by, as his so-called ‘dive’ appeared to be a clear penalty.

The biggest surprise of the game, however, was in the goalscorers. Aguero failed to get on the score sheet, but both Yaya Toure and Frank Lampard scored the first two goals. The third came from an unlikely source when Aguero played the ball across to Gael Clichy, who smashed it in to the top corner of the goal from close range, claiming his first goal for the Sky Blues.

Here’s how Twitter reacted to Clichy’s goal:

‘He Must Be Sacked’: Man City Fans Lose Patience With Pellegrini

It hasn’t been an easy few weeks for Manuel Pellegrini and his Man City side, and last night it got even harder. In recent weeks, City have drawn to CSKA Moscow and lost to West Ham and Newcastle, having put in some very lacklustre performances. In their must win home clash against CSKA in the Champions League last night, ill discipline and an utter lack of fight saw them lose to a team who had never won in England before.

Manuel Pellegrini said after the game that he doesn’t understand why his team struggle so much in the Champions League and to be honest, who can blame him? One fan at the game became so bored and disinterested in the match that he took the time to prepare himself a sandwich in the stands.

Here’s how Twitter reacted to the game: