Daily Mail: City perhaps deserved a draw
- 14 April 2014 07:58
- Posted by @roline_mcfc
Compiling the media round-up the morning after a defeat - particularly one as significant as yesterday's - is never an enjoyable task... but hey, it has to be done! So what do the newspapers make of the result?
Well, as you can imagine, there's a lot of love for Liverpool out there but almost shockingly, there are a few media sources who argue the Blues were a little unlucky not to come away from Anfield with a point.
The Daily Mail is one of them.
"City perhaps deserved a draw," claims Ian Ladyman. "The rub of the green wasn’t theirs. They could have been given two penalties, while Luis Suarez, on another day, would have received a second yellow card for diving.
"Ultimately, though, City failed because they did not feed off the occasion like Liverpool. City started dreadfully and the home team raced away from them. City looked startled and they should not have been.
"They were 2-0 down at half-time, and it could have been worse. Liverpool, as ravenous as they were, lacked a clinical edge at times.
"In the second half — inspired by their superb playmaker David Silva — City found a way back into the game on the back of the sheer quality of their football.
"They did not lack intelligence or courage but when the game required an injection of adrenaline in the final 10 minutes, Pellegrini’s team could not find it.
"Liverpool were aided in the scoring of their winning goal by an error from City captain Vincent Kompany. It was unfortunate for the Belgian because he had been superb in the second half."
I think that's a fair assessment but I'm afraid that's about as sympathetic as it gets for the Blues.
The Express for example, suggest that individual errors can be the difference between winning the Premier League title and losing it.
Writes John Dillon: "There is one moment every season, whether it is through a flash of sheer brilliance or a grubby mistake, that the destiny of title is shaped. Today it is advantage Liverpool.
"What’s more, they will be increasingly confident of retaining the upper hand with just four games remaining following another statement of their hunger and breathless intent, rounded off by Steven Gerrard’s rousing huddle at the final whistle, to reach the finishing line first.
"That the visit of City had reached the point where Brendan Rodgers’ team got everything back, just when it appeared they had given it all away, served to highlight the absorbing nature of a pulsating contest that laid assault to the senses and was a joy to behold.
"Liverpool had City cornered inside half an hour only for Manuel Pellegrini’s side to rouse themselves before the error from Kompany, whose fitness had been shrouded in doubt before kick-off and rarely looked at his authoritative best, left the momentum on Merseyside.
"There is no one better than City’s Class of 2012 to testify how winning is everything. Yet many of those who remain at the club from back then, left here fearing that shimmering title triumph will remain the exception when it was supposed to be, by now, the norm."
Elsewhere, the Manchester Evening News agree that the Blues were made to pay for a slow start but also blame the "incompetence" of referee Mark Clattenburg.
"We expected goals, we expected drama and we were not let down," declares Mike Keegan. "These are two teams set up to attack and not to 'destroy' as Manuel Pellegrini calls it and boy, did it show.
"City struggled to stem the Red tides. Most worrying was the lack of any attacking threat from their left. Too often Gael Clichy failed to get forward to support fellow Frenchman Samir Nasri.
"As we feared, an injured knee [to Vincent Kompany] would prove costly, only it was Yaya Toure and not Kompany who limped out of the action. Javi Garcia replaced the Ivorian and City's attacking thrust from the middle rested on the broad Brazilian shoulders of Fernandinho.
"The Scousers second was again down to Kompany, who lost leaping Martin Skrtel at the near post. Gradually the Blues pulled themselves off the Merseyside turf and hauled themselves back into it.
"Replacing the ineffective Jesus Navas for the industry of James Milner looked like a masterstroke from Pellegrini.
"All of a sudden David Silva had space and the home side were the ones panicking. Silva reduced arrears before getting the luck City deserved to level. On came Aguero for the unlucky Edin Dzeko, to win it, we thought.
"Immediately Silva almost did just that. But with one, ill-timed swing of his boot Kompany killed the momentum, even if Coutinho's finish was a beauty.
"Fine margins. Pellegrini may have reacted well to the early onslaught but he could not prepare for Mark Clattenburg's incompetence. Luis Suarez should have gone and the Blues should have had two penalties. On such decisions rest the outcomes of title races."
Well, that made thoroughly depressing reading. Still, until I hear that fat lady — whoever she is — belting out "You'll Never Walk Alone", I will still believe.
Check back to mcfc.co.uk at the same time tomorrow for more City-related stories in the media!
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