Saturday, 16 May 2015

Stay focused City!

With us having lost out on retaining our league title a few weeks ago now all we could have done was to fix our steely glare on second place.


And so while Manyoo lost 3 in a row and with Arsenal suffering a last-home-game-defeat to our next opponents, that’s exactly what we’ve done…and in some style it has to be said; with 4 straight wins, 12 goals scored and 3 clean sheets.


That needs to continue into tomorrow and next Sunday.

Weekend permutations...and ‘the next best thing’

IF we beat ‘The Swans’ tomorrow we should have all-but secured our ‘runners up’ spot – only three Arsenal 5 or 6-0 wins could ruin that on goal difference IF we follow a victory in Wales tomorrow with a win at home to Southampton in the last game of the season the following Sunday.

Lose tomorrow – and here comes the other scenarios in the ‘what if’ section - and we’ll need Manyoo to do us a favour. Or will we?

Okay, so City lose to Swansea and we then find ourselves in a situation where Arsenal – playing after us at Scaffold Trafford tomorrow – are just 3 points behind but with TWO games in hand. Those games-in-hand are at home to Sunderland and West Brom.

Now of course Sunderland might be scrapping for their very Premier League lives and, you have to chuck into the mix, Arsenal may have one eye on the F.A. Cup Final on 30th May. Perhaps that’s what happened to them last Monday (taking nothing away from Swansea of course).

But having LOST to Swansea I can’t see them taking another risk and will want to finishing runners up I’m sure and, so, I recon they’ll most likely beat the lowly Black Cats and mid-table-safe West Brom…and that scenario sees us slip from a creditable 2nd-place finish.

SO…lose tomorrow and we’ll want Manyoo to beat Arsenal, right? Well do we? Lose in Wales tomorrow and Manyoo win and that-then sends us into the last game of the season with the possibility of a home slip-up to The Saints and Manyoo possibly battering doomed-looking Hull City to ensure that the Trafford lot will finish above us.

What about an Cold Trafford draw tomorrow then, should we lose our game? Well that would certainly ensure that Manyoo will finish below us; seeing as that would leave them 4 points behind with just 1 game left for both the Manchester & Trafford teams. But that would then put Arsenal in the driving seat as they would sit just 2-points behind but with two (home) games to play to our one.

If you don’t mind, I’m not going to go into the "what if we draw tomorrow" scenario – I’m starting to feel dizzy and a little sick…

So shut it!

So I’ll stop now and moving onto my Pellegrini predicted line-up, subs and match outcome; I’ll continue the headline message in that it’s simply up to us to focus on achieving the only outcome we should be aiming for; one which kills off Manyoo and goes a long way to shutting out The Gunners.

I will finally add, though, that if we DO win in our 1:30pm KO (BST) game tomorrow I will bloody-well be cheering on Manyoo from 4:00pm…and I might even cheekily do it ‘down the pub’ too…

v Swansea City

4-5-1 (4-2-3-1):









Subs: Caballero, Sagna, Kompany, Toure, Navas, Dzeko, Bony

Looks familiar? It’s the exact same personnel & formation as the home game to QPR last Sunday. Same set of subs too.

Basically…despite the possible temptation to go with the recovered Clichy in place of Kolarov; the same temptation to go with the recovered Kompany (for Mangala?), that our manager also has Toure available and then he might even have the urge to thrown in Bony against his old club; I don’t think he will.

We’re winning and we’re not conceding many – why change it with only 2 games left?

Besides, he has those other options on the bench should he decide that they’re required.

Notable absences: Samir Nasri (injured) & Stevan Jovetic (not selected).

Result? Swansea draw a lot of praise from many – myself included – and quite rightly so. Garry Monk has them playing decent and very attacking football and at home in particular they are strong; with only 4 defeats from 18 league games.

They’ve won their last 3; are within striking distance of 6th and with 11 teams in the Premier League ‘in the minus’ on goal difference, Swansea have made it to the penultimate game of the season with a very reasonable and level “0” in the ‘GD’ column.

This one will be a fight…and should be a good game too!

But we’ve shown of late that we are now up for the fight and, in many ways, we’ve got our ‘swagger’ back. If we can avoid the sort of early scare – or survive one again at least – that we saw at White Hart Lane a couple of weeks back, which gave us all heart flutters, then I’m going for our ‘superior quality all round’ and current ‘flying confidence’ to see us through. It’s an away win and our 5th win in a row.

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