Sunday’s fixture showed how far the pendulum has swung.
Against Barcelona, Hazard was quiet and that happened again in the 1-0 loss to City on Sunday. “We have shown that – and if we don’t reach that kind of level of performance in every match, it’s because of our attitude”. A solitary goal from Bernardo Silva in the second half was enough to win the game for City as they move 18 points clear at the top of the table.
“Antonio called us stupid, maybe he did, I don’t know the exact quotes, but he’ll have been equally as disgusted”, said Neville.
“I think that we missed the last pass in many counter-attacks”, he said.
“We’ve seen an unbelievable cross by Harry Kane and they scored a wonderful goal. Fortunately, we got three more points and we’re closer to the title”.
In spite of that, Guardiola said he would not shift his attention to securing European glory just yet. Trying to get them to do certain jobs, it has a negative impact on the team when you set your stall out in that manner. Although Pep Guardiola was celebrating – he must have thought that was a waste of time.
“Not just scoring goals, but he doesn’t lose one ball”.
His gloved passing works beautifully in conjunction with the jetted heels of Leroy Sané on the other flank.
Guardiola, however, believes that his side must fill their trophy cabinet before they can compare themselves with Barcelona, who he led to three La Liga titles and two Champions League crowns during his four years in charge at the Nou Camp.
Indeed, it’s worth noting even relegation-threatened Newcastle United-whose similar approach to their clash with City on December 27 also attracted criticism-produced two shots on target against the Sky Blues, one of which required an impressive goal-line intervention from Nicolas Otamendi. But the way goalkeeper Loris Karius and a back four of Trent Alexander-Arnold, Dejan Lovren, Virgil Van Dijk and Andy Robertson combined at Anfield against a Newcastle side managed by former Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez, suggested the Merseysiders might at last be tightening up in defence.
With nine games remaining, City who are on 78 points, can become the first team to break the 100-point barrier in the history of English top-flight football.
After making his debut in a League Cup game in October, Zinchenko has had a run of games.
Disagree with our selections?
Nobody will be criticising the Spaniard for his role in the mix-up with Andreas Christensen that allowed Bernardo Silva to score, though. Let us know by commenting below.