Saturday, 13 September 2008

City vs Chelsea player ratings

Hart Could do very little about any of the Chelsea goals. Did not have many other saves to make. Generally solid on his kicking and catching. 6

Zabaleta Not an ideal debut: forty hours after a long haul flight, against one of the league's strongest teams, in the most hyped City game for years. So his looking slightly off the pace is no great crisis. More willing to get his shorts dirty than Corluka. Made a perfect tackle on Drogba in stoppage time. 5

Dunne Won most of the headers he had to contest. Outpaced by Anelka for his goal, although he is not the first centre half to have suffered this. Rugby tackle on Drogba no better than Terry's on Jô. 6

Richards Good news that he swiftly recovered again from an injury, but he was not at his dominant best. Missed the initial header for Carvalho's goal. Should have conceded a penalty for a push on Anelka. 6

Ball Solid and competent, as we have come to expect. Left stranded sometimes by Ireland's drifting, and faced a very competitive opponent in Bosingwa. Did his duty going forward, albeit with little to show for it. Still the most obvious position for January reinforcement though. 7

Wright-Phillips Sparky but rather infuriating. Very sharp in the first twenty minutes - ran at Ashley Cole and had some nice interchanges with the Brazilians. But drifted out of the game later on, and his moments in possession were increasingly predictable or mistaken. 6

Kompany Energetic defensively, if not always effective. Lampard and Deco were leagues better than the West Ham and Sunderland midfields he has dominated in recent weeks. They moved the ball around him at times. Did not get the chance to show off his passing range when Ireland, Robinho and Wright-Phillips had all raced so far ahead of him. 6

Hamann Third consecutive start, and even with thirteen days of rest the 35 year old looked tired. Asked to do too much against a masterful Chelsea midfield. Missed Johnson's energetic presence - could not even control possession as he is used to. 6

Ireland City's most impressive performer. Played on the left wing, certainly not his natural position, and spent most of his time inside. Excelled even Robinho and Wright-Phillips with his touch and incisive passing in the final third. Passed up two good chances to shoot though. Deserved his selection over Elano. 7

Robinho He fulfilled his promise 'to score at least one goal'. Showed the understanding with his Brazilian strike partner one would expect - but did also link well with Wright-Phillips. His freekick was quite good, and a special moment. Not quite as many stepovers as feared; needs to play to the whistle more. 7

A strong performance in difficult circumstances. Won a good percentage of headers against Terry, produced a few lovely touches to link with the other attacking players. Seems to have a good understanding with Robinho - will bear fruit in time. 7

Subs
Gelson
Energetic, not very productive.

2 comments:

Don said...

Good summary- but my question is why wasn't Elano involved???

JPB said...

Don,

I think with Robinho and SWP guaranteed to start, there was only room for one other attacking midfielder, to play out on the left.

Steven Ireland has worked very hard this year (my August player of the month) and is more mobile than Elano (although he did not give Ball as much help as he perhaps ought).

Also don't forget Elano's last start was away in Midtjylland, when he drifted out of the game, headbutted an opponent and was instantly taken off by Hughes. He was then dropped for Sunderland away.

All good teams have competition for places, but I do fear that when Petrov comes back it will be even harder for Elano to get in the team.

Another reason to hope we do well in all of the cup competitions!