Sunday best for Blues
- Sun 30 Dec 2012, 9:33AM
- Posted by David Clayton
It’s always pleasant to scour the Press cuttings the morning after a deserved City victory.
The Observer’s Anna Kessel elects to focus on City’s blistering start in her report, opening with: “It took 82 seconds for City to shake off the rumours that they might be about to succumb to consecutive defeats for the first time in the league this season, following a shock loss at Sunderland on Boxing Day.
"Ahead of this game all the news about City had been dreary: trailing the league leaders, Manchester United, by seven points, the defending champions were statistically inferior to their performances at the same stage last season in almost every way, worse still they had also been unceremoniously dumped out of Europe.
“But a rip-roaring four minutes into the match and there was a distinct change in mood, as Roberto Mancini's much-maligned men shot into the lead with two goals. Edin Dzeko was the executor of both, but with Sergio Agüero, David Silva and the rest of the team firing on all cylinders, City instantly appeared truly unstoppable.”
The Sunday Express’ Peter Layton looks more closely at Nasri’s sending off in his match report, adding: “Midfielder Nasri was sent packing seconds before the break for an attempted headbutt to leave City staring a second successive defeat in the face.
"But Blues boss Mancini reacted with impressive composure to the setback and so did his team, who went into the game under ferocious pressure to win following their shock setback at Sunderland.
"A backs-to-the-wall second-half display eventually delivered the three points and ensured that the gap between themselves and their bitter rivals stayed in single figures.
"The games’s biggest talking point came when midfielder Nasri reacted furiously after a full-blooded tackle by his fellow Frenchman, Norwich central defender Sebastien Bassong, had sent him spinning into the air.
The pair then went head-to-head in the footballers’ foxtrot before Nasri foolishly lunged forward again and although he failed to make contact, referee Michael Jones showed him a straight red card for intent.”
That’s pretty much the best of it, though it all makes interesting reading. We’ll end today’s review with one transfer rumour that we’ve heard little of before today
The Daily Mail’s Joe Bernstein suggests the Blues may look to one of the country’s meanest defences for a potential new recruit when the January window opens.
He speculates: “England defender Ryan Shawcross may be a shock departure from Stoke in the transfer window if he doesn’t sign a six-year deal offered recently.
"The club are unhappy at the prospect of the 25-year-old running down the last 18 months of his deal. Manchester City like him, and could be tempted to make a move for the former Manchester United man.”