Tag Archive | "Manchester City FC"

Villarreal vs. Manchester City Preview, Picks, Tips, & Analysis 11/2/11

We always knew that Group A was going to be one of the toughest groups in the Champions League group stage schedule this year. However, we didn’t know just how difficult this group was really going to be. On Wednesday, we might be facing a bit of a de facto elimination battle between Villarreal and Manchester City, as these two teams are trying to get out of the gutter in Group A.

For Man City, a 1-1-1 start to the Champions League slate was unimaginable. The team has been just so insanely efficient in the Premier League, it isn’t even funny. It went on the road and absolutely thrashed Manchester United at Old Trafford, a feat that is never easily accomplished, and it has scored 36 goals in 10 fixtures in domestically as well. The Citizens are 9-1-0 and have a +28 goal differential, and they really are off to one of the best starts that a team has ever had in this league.

It’s clear that there are just riches and riches of talent on this team. Sergio Aguero has nine goals this year, as does Edin Dzeko. Mario Balotelli has five strikes, while David Silva has three. That doesn’t even include the power of Carlos Tevez, whose antics have seen him essentially jettisoned from the squad. Perhaps getting the Tevez drama over and done with after losing at Bayern Munich earlier in the Champions League will be just what the doctor has ordered for the Citizens if they hope to get out of Group A this year.

It’s tough to say that Villarreal really needs to get three points out of this fixture, but that unfortunately, really is the case. The team is in the gutter, and it is going to be a decided underdog in this fixture, and without any real freebee matches to come, the team can’t afford to sit here at the bottom for very long.

The truth of the matter is that the faster this team gets out of European competitions, the quicker that it can focus on La Liga. This year has been a certified disaster for the Spanish side, going 2-4-4 in its first 10 matches. Before Saturday’s win against Rayo at home, the team had lost back to back matches by 3-0 counts.

In the second of those matches against Real Madrid, the team’s top striker, Giuseppe Rossi was knocked out with an ACL injury that could cause him to miss the rest of the year. He certainly won’t be around in this match and likely will not be on the bench for support either. Without Rossi, who already has three goals domestically this year and netted two just to get the team into the Champions League this year, there is a real void that Villarreal just will not be able to fill.

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These two teams met on October 18th on English soil, a match that nearly ended in disaster for the hosts. They were behind 1-0 just four minutes in, and it took an Aguero goal in the 90th minute just to pick up the three points in that crucial tie.

Villarreal doesn’t have a point yet in the Champions League, and a loss parlayed with a win for Napoli over Bayern Munich ensures that its European campaign is finished. Even a win will still keep it in last place, though at least qualification is fathomable at that point.

For Man City, a win will most likely boost it back into the qualifying territory for the UCL knockout rounds. It is currently one point back of Napoli and three behind Bayern Munich. Goal differential could be key as well, as the Citizens are currently at a -1, and even a one goal victory could still leave them on some tenuous ground going forward for the rest of this competition.

Posted in Champions League (UCL), Featured

Manchester United vs. Manchester City Premier League Tips 10/23/11

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The top of the Premier League table will be determined on Sunday afternoon at Old Trafford, as arguably the two best teams in England duke it out when Manchester United takes on Manchester City in the biggest derby of the year.

Though Chelsea is just a single point behind United and three behind City, there is no doubt that the two sides from Manchester have been the most impressive of all this year. They are two of the three sides that have not been beaten on the campaign (joining the surprises of the Premier League season, Newcastle United), and they have combined to score 52 goals against 12 allowed in eight fixtures apiece.

Nigel De Jong, the heart and soul of this Man City side, claims that his team is traveling to Old Trafford as the table toppers and should be treated as such. And why not? The team has more goals away from home this year (14) than as the guests (13).

The Citizens do have some results that are worth being concerned about this year, though. They were beaten in the Champions League at Bayern Munich 2-0 in a game in which they were thoroughly dominated, and they also only drew 2-2 at Craveners Cottage against Fulham back on September 18th.

Even though Carlos Tevez looks like he will never suit up in the light blue again, this is still a team with some awesome firepower. Man City dropped a pair of goals, including a late winner on Villarreal on Tuesday night in the Champions League, and it has scored at least two goals in all of its Premier League fixtures this year.

Of course, the Red Devils have all of the pride, history, and tradition on their side in this one, and they are hoping to snare three points to get back to the top of the table where they feel they belong.

United was unlucky not to snare all three points at Anfield against Liverpool last weekend, as it was equalized late on in a match that could have been much, much worse. That being said, this isn’t a team that is in fine form right now. A 2-0 win at doormats, Otelul Galati in the Champions League on Tuesday only came courtesy of two penalty kicks by Wayne Rooney, and prior to that, the team only has one win (home against Norwich City) in its last five total matches.

These two teams have already met once this year, and it was a thrilling match to say the least. City took a 2-0 lead in the Community Shield, only to cough that lead up. Ultimately, Man U was able to steal the Cup at the death. Nani, who is emerging as a leader on this veteran side, netted the equalizer in the 58th minute and the winner in stoppage time for the Red Devils.

Probably more thanks to their names than anything else, United gets the slight nod from the oddsmakers in this one at even money to take all three points. We tend to fancy the Citizens though, as they truly might have the best side in England this season and could prove it in the biggest match of the year to date on Sunday.

Posted in English Premier League, Featured


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