Cheap Discount Manchester City FC Jersey

Gabriel Jesus
Gabriel Jesus

 

A scintillating first half-hour laid the foundation for City’s 2-1 win as a clever and resilient Napoli side forced their way back into the game thereafter, pushing City more than any other opponent so far this season.

Positives

City started where they had left off against Stoke at the weekend, with a whirlwind attacking spell that had Napoli in absolute knots. Mesmerising football, concentrated on the left flank to start, brought immediate rewards and perhaps should have delivered more before the game turned.

Negatives

Tired legs? Over-confidence? Over-elaboration at the back? Or simply an opponent of a different calibre? Having done the hard work and exerted energy streaming forward for more, City were suddenly pushed back by an opponent that had spent the first 30 minutes unable to hold onto the ball and trapped inside their own half.

Manager Rating out of 10

8 — Pep Guardiola chose exactly the same starting line-up with good reason. Saw his side play outstandingly sharp and incisive football for half an hour, then be closed down and forced backwards by a crafty and well-balanced Napoli side. Now needs to give some a rest.

Player ratings (1-10; 10=best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Ederson, 9 — Was already playing well, when he was asked to face a penalty. The scuffed shot by Dries Mertens came straight down the middle and he saved well with his left boot. Outstanding in his quick darts to the edge of the box and in his safe, confident handling.

DF Kyle Walker, 7 — So far forward that his blocked shot in the box led to Raheem Sterling’s early breakthrough. Was being given more food for thought at the other end, however, and despite his ability to recover quickly, he gave away the first penalty by pulling Raul Albiol back at a corner. Often left Lorenzo Insigne in too much space in the second half.

DF John Stones, 9 — Outstanding again at the back as City’s tactics unravelled in the second half. Quick to recover and nick the ball from the menacing Mertens, directing plenty of traffic from left to right and back again as City controlled possession. Somehow got his belly in front of one goal-bound shot as City almost paid dearly for their dallying. A dazzling 94 percent pass accuracy tells the story of his night.

DF Nicolas Otamendi, 7 — Hectic time for him. Less composed with the close passing across the back but right at home with the lunging interceptions, one of which robbed Mertens before half-time and another came critically to the rescue towards the end as Napoli pressed.

DF Fabian Delph, 7 — Calm and assured in early period, but appeared a little rattled by the second half onslaught. Overhit a pass that put Fernandinho in trouble in front of his own goal, but showed battling qualities and a calmness on the ball that was admirable.

MF Fernandinho, 8 — An all-action game from the Brazil international. Great deal of steady possession early on, first to the loose ball when Ederson saved the first penalty and always attentive to Napoli’s attacks down the flanks. Worked hard through the middle and dug out one lovely through-ball to Jesus. Blotted his copybook by giving away the second penalty, for which he was booked.

MF Leroy Sane, 6 — Appeared to have put the wrong studs in, so often was he on the floor. Gave Albiol plenty to think about, but also lost possession far too easily. Drew a yellow for Christian Maggio.

MF Raheem Sterling, 7 — Fast to the rebound when Walker’s shot came to him early on and his cool finish put City ahead. Gave Kalidou Koulibaly plenty to think about but it’s a shame he cannot arc a ball into the box like Kevin de Bruyne.

MF David Silva, 8 — Key to releasing Leroy Sane early on, he produced the deft cut-back that led to the opening goal. Outshone Marek Hamsik early on but failed to release the ball in time when there was a chance for a third goal. Replaced by Ilkay Gundogan after a clash of heads with Elseid Hysaj.

MF Kevin de Bruyne, 8 — Bossed the start and produced another sublime pass to set up the second goal on a plate for Jesus. One amazing left footer hit first time came back off the underside of the bar. So clever in his working of tight spaces and changing direction of attacks.

FW Gabriel Jesus, 8 — A real lung-busting effort in chasing down the defenders all night. Touched in the second might have had a second, had Koulibaly stopped it on the line between his knees.

Substitutes

MF Bernardo Silva, 7 — Arrived as a 68th minute replacement for Silva and immediately went on a terrific slalom through the middle. However, he was bypassed by a lot of the flow in the other direction.

MF Ilkay Gundogan, NR — On for Sane after 75 minutes and found himself pushed well forward to aid a tiring Jesus.

DF Danilo, NR — Replaced Jesus as Guardiola tried to bung some holes.

Cheap Discount Manchester United FC Jersey

Jose Mourinho
Jose Mourinho

 

 

Jose Mourinho says Manchester United do not need to prove anything at Anfield on Saturday but has warned Liverpool his team are better equipped to win there than they were last season.

United have started their Premier League campaign with six wins and a draw from their first seven games, but only two of those matches have been against teams that finished in the top 10 last season, while the contest against Jurgen Klopp’s side will be their first against another of the big six.

The Anfield clash has been labelled a test of United’s title credentials, though Mourinho disagrees.

“We have to prove nothing,” he told Sky Sports. “We have our objectives for the season, we know where we want to go and how we have to go.

“This is press talk, or pundit talk: ‘We have something to prove, [Romelu] Lukaku has to score, we have to win’ [is what they say]. One match, one result, one performance. That’s not going to change anything.

“You can say, like some people do, we have not played one of the top five teams but last season we did not beat West Ham at home, last season we did not beat Everton at home or Southampton away.”

United left Anfield last season with a point after a goalless draw. They managed just one shot on target and Mourinho was accused of using defensive tactics to spoil the game — although Zlatan Ibrahimovic had a chance to win it in the second half.

Lukaku will lead the line against Liverpool this time after he proved his fitness with a 23-minute runout and a goal in Belgium’s 4-0 win over Cyprus on Tuesday.

And the striker, who has scored 11 goals in 10 games since arriving at Old Trafford in the summer from Everton, is one reason Mourinho says this team is better than the one that lined up at Anfield last season.

“I think we are a better team [than we were],” he said. “I think it would be unfair to say Lukaku and [Nemanja] Matic did not make an impact, we have to admit that and give them what they deserve. But also the team give Matic and Lukaku the conditions to arrive the way they have.

“Globally we are a better team — does that mean we are going to be as successful as last season, winning two titles? I don’t know. But we are better.”

Mourinho has a good record at Anfield in the Premier League, losing just one of his seven visits, while winning four and drawing two.

Chelsea’s 2-0 victory at Anfield in April 2014, aided by Steven Gerrard’s slip, was a hammer blow to Liverpool’s title chances, with Manchester City going on to win it.

Mourinho added: “I like to play against the best teams, I like to play against the best clubs and I like to play at the best stadiums — the stadiums with more history. At Anfield I’ve had great moments and I’ve had bad moments. They have had happiness against me, they have had very sad moments against me.

“It’s for three points, not four. Maybe if we were in a moment of the season where it was a duel between two teams it would mean more, but it’s not the case. At the same time, in these kinds of matches, every single moment plays a part. We are playing against a good team with very good players.”