Saturday, 10 July 2010

Boateng bags bronze

All three of the remaining City players at the World Cup will go home with medals, as Germany beat Uruguay 3-2 in the third/fourth place play-off. Jérôme Boateng will join his new team-mates three weeks for now with a World Cup bronze medal.

He moved to right-back, having played left-back in recent games. This was interesting, I've got a feeling he's just as likely to play right-back than centrally this coming season, certainly if we sign David Luiz. I don't think he's a natural full back, but he was very assured this evening. There were none of the defensive lapses that spoilt his semi-final (it certainly helped that Martín Cáceres didn't get forward half as much as Sergio Ramos had), and he had some good moments going forward.

When afforded some space in the second half he swung in two perfect crosses from the touchline: the first was headed in by Marcell Jansen to make the score 2-2, the second was just missed by a flying Stefan Kießling. His best moment was yet to come, as he won the ball in defence and surged up the pitch, linking with Thomas Müller in a counter-attack as direct and exciting as anything Germany produced against England and Argentina, even if it was ultimately unsuccessful.

He could well be our first choice right back. He's certainly better than Micah Richards: he's got all of his athleticism plus a whole lot more technical ability. He's different from Pablo Zabaleta, not quite as canny or as reliable and so we could choose between them depending on the context. But he looks promising and I am excited about seeing him in blue.

Nigel de Jong and David Silva will compete for the World Cup tomorrow evening.


budakon said...

Yes it was a great performance tonight from Boateng. Very assured. Managed to make to very good interceptions and blocks and muscle himself between the attacker and ball several times.
Also good to see him putting in quality crosses as well.
My only criticism would be that he tend to sit higher up the pitch than the other 3 defenders which against better opposition could have led to the extra space behind being exploited. But then he seems to have a pretty good turn of pace when needed.
I agree that he is likely to be our first choice right back, probably moving inside as cover when needed.

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