Much like a Daniel Farke training session, opening the batting in the Norfolk Cricket Alliance is no easy task. The bowlers are experienced, crafty and skilful. The ball is new, hard and with a pronounced seam that could so menacingly lead to some form of deflection off the unknown quantity that is the freshly prepared […]
It’s just been just over three years since Ricky van Wolfswinkel scored those two goals. Two years since our much-maligned forward miraculously scored twice in that emphatic pre-season game at Braintree. It was a warm Tuesday night. City had travelled to the insalubrious Cressing Road under the recently-appointed and relatively popular Neil Adams. Ricky’s ostensibly […]
Twitter is a brilliant medium for debate. A medium that engages the masses, fosters awareness of contemporary and pertinent issues and one that facilitates the visibility of a vast spectrum of views. It provokes. It angers. It shapes opinions. Such a medium invariably becomes increasingly active during periods of change, transition or importance. That intensification […]
My MFW absence over the past few weeks can be justified. Despite the advent of notable transfer activity and the arrival of significant, youthful promise among the City ranks, footballing notions have been regrettably subordinated owing to hectic foreign odysseys and dissertation proposal deadlines. Following the conclusion of my second year exams, the depths of […]
It’s been a couple of months since I provoked a vehement discussion on a WhatsApp group chat among a selection of my university mates. James Milner had just converted a penalty in front of a jubilant Liverpool travelling contingent at the Etihad to put his side a goal up. On Twitter, I’d read somebody allude […]
Naismith was superb, playing with energy and vivacity with the ball while harrying Leeds’ overrun midfielders like a terrier off it. Owing to his occasional lack of innovation, Naismith’s significance when City do not have possession has gone increasingly unnoticed this season.
Hughton is a man of dignity, integrity and principal. He never shied away from providing the fans with honest, sincere and forthright answers in times of adversity. In a long term sense, things didn’t work out for him at City. I – like many others I’m sure – wish things had ensued differently.
Russell Martin and Ryan Bennett were mannequins for the lively Jonathan Kodjia’s second goal. I don’t recall Alex Tettey playing a single pass that delineated any sense of directness, urgency or penetration. Steven Whittaker was daydreaming for the home side’s opener.
The new business model announced on Saturday morning represents a significant turning point from our club, terminating the seemingly outdated and recently ineffective traditional system and implementing a refreshed, overtly modern continental structure. Although many may have their doubts, such a reconfiguration was exactly what this drifting club needed.
Sunday’s stalemate constituted a setback. So did that rudderless outing at the Pirelli. But twelve games remain. With a minimal 3-point gap between City and sixth place so irresistibly looming, we must believe. We’ve seen glimpses from this underachieving squad. Let us nostalgically reflect back to that jubilant trip to the City Ground in September
The season appears to have gone. The ostensibly improved run we had recently constructed showed no real signs of progress, with victories only coming at a subdued Carrow Road against relatively low-lying Wolves, Birmingham and Nottingham Forest and the solitary away win in Wales at the hands of the equally incompetent Cardiff.
McNally had his flaws. The bizarrely announced resignation via social media aside, his decision to publicly undermine Chris Hughton through the announcement that he was searching for potential replacements was far from his finest hour. Such impetuousness is not what this club needs.
Klose and Martin are not bad defenders but are simply not reliable nor solid enough to function as the backbone of a promotion chasing team. Two clean sheets may suggest otherwise but they have come at home against ineffective opposition and the result at Rotherham once again made their shortcomings palpable.
This performance did delineate just what this City side are capable of. It showed that if Neil – finally – picks his most effective team, deploys the right tactics and fosters the requisite unity and spirit required to produce results, this season will not descend into the futile one it appeared to be plummeting into. Time now to build.
Defensive ineptitude and vulnerability prevailed. City’s resurgence was short-lived, the termination of which once again derived from the failure of individuals to successfully conduct fundamental jobs and to take responsibility. It’s become something of a Comedy of Errors now.
The uninspiring and unstimulating duo of Robbie Brady and Jacob Murphy were fundamentally oblivious to their important defensive duties, steadfastly refusing to track back and therefore leaving City exposed.
Scenes were toxic at Oakwell. Such obvious aversion from City’s loyal following must surely go some distance in relinquishing Moxey’s seemingly oblivious stance towards our pain. The fans want change. City need change.
Whilst City’s November nadir has been less a product of our lack of creativity than one of defensive ineptitude, Saturday was nonetheless a concern. City have a talented squad – the second most so in this league – yet Alex Neil seems fundamentally incapable of deriving the optimum performances from his players.
There is also a strong case for dropping Klose. Although his clever and often amusing employment of social media indicates he is clearly committed to City, the errors committed at the weekend were so poor.
The players must receive some form of criticism, too: the same eleven who looked so comfortable throughout the first half on Tuesday night subsequently crumbled after half-time, letting what could be two critical points slip.