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15 Mar 2018 21:16:27
I was bewildered by Tuesday night, utterly bewildered, been shaking my head thinking about it for two days. Its been years since I saw such a timid limp display and I am still not sure why, selecting Fellaini apart. I don't think the club will make a decision to change managers after one game, no matter how poor it was, given there has been obvious improvement in our position so far, so some will be disappointed.

I would be guessing but I think there is a combination, maybe the tactics were to ensure we didn't concede first, driven by a poor performance and result away, then pick them off as they came out or tired. How many times have we said an away goal is vital. The team became nervous, partly because they got caught not wanting to concede, and lacking the gritty characters went into their shells. I maintain some looked like the stage was too big. Some blame on both the manager and the players, but I can't understand why there was no passion. I do think that Jose has taken the heat off the players this week with what he has said, deliberate or otherwise.

We now have to look forward. I would hope there is a regular communication scheduled between manager and executives and an understanding sought of what the manager thought happened. We have a game this weekend, I don't think by the reaction of the fans Jose can afford to see the team being timid. Characters would normally drive the performance in the next game but we don't have any, yet it needs to be better than Tuesday. Tuesday could turn out to be a watershed, let's see on Saturday. Fans need to cheer the team, be the extra man, we did it for years when we were far worse than now, now it seems they want to be entertained before singing. Support is needed now, your team needs you.

Agree8 Disagree1

15 Mar 2018 22:05:32
Good post red man. I too have been thinking about Tuesday for the last few days. I was fuming yesterday and and still have a lingering anger as to why we were so disgracefully timid. I don’t want to be someone who overreacts after one bad result but that for me was a watershed moment. I suppose the bubble burst and I took my red tinted glasses and realised jose’s Not the right man to lead our club. I have seen nothing which suggests He has bought into the ethos and traditions that we as a club are accustomed to. He is extremely egotistical and stubborn and it’s always his way or his way. Unless he is willing to really change his tactics then I can’t see the fans changing their minds.

He got selection so wrong with Fellaini and taking out mata. He got it wrong shifting rashford to the right. But this isn’t the only time he has got it wrong. He got it wrong against Liverpool at Anfield with the tactics. He keeps selecting smalling and young which I believe is wrong. He consistently plays a two man field even though we always get overrun. He’s dropped martial who was in a very rich vein of form. These are all examples which he has got it wrong and hasn’t changed. So why would he suddenly change his approach and implement attacking tactics? He is not going to change and if he doesn’t then this time next year will be very toxic. I want him to succeed but last night showed to me that he is incapable of competing with pep at city and he will not get us to where we need to be.

15 Mar 2018 22:14:25
All that was bad enough but his comments after take the biscuit
I knocked Manchester United out twice. i sat here with Porto, I sat here with real Madrid. your great Jose. all about himself.
Manchester United is bigger than that clown.
Rashford very affective on the left against liverpool then switched him to the right, A game made for Mata. fellani and matic in the middle for what their speed.
I am the special one.

15 Mar 2018 22:20:47
It was a terrible display redman, soon as I saw Fellani in the 11 I knew the game we were going to play and knew it would be tricky.

The preparation for the game wasn't exactly right if you ask me. After the game against Liverpool the players should of been on a high, raring to go but instead our manager went for FDB and allowed eyes to wonder away from the task at hand.

I understand Mourinho's frustration, he seems to get a lot of unjust flak but pick your times to hit back. He done it against Conte perfectly.

The sad thing is we actually have some really good players. De Gea, Baily, Matic, Pogba, Rashford and Martial are all good players to build our team around. But, for some reason we have made Fellani, Young, Lingard and Smalling our important players.

Defence is our real weak link. Our fullbacks are average and Smalling is the worse defender at the club. Yet we set up to give them the most work. We can't be suprised when they let us down.

It's not all bad though on fact far from it. But performances need to improve and wins must become consistent.

15 Mar 2018 22:46:08
Red Man - I was at the game on Tuesday and it somehow didn't have the feel of a big European night. Maybe a lot of fans (myself included) under estimated Sevilla and I think the general mood was one of nervousness rather than frenzy. No disrespect to Sevilla but the occasion didn't exactly get the juices flowing and I think most expected us just to get the job done and move onto a more glamorous tie in the next round.

The 0-0 draw in the first leg certainly didn't help and I can't help thinking even a defeat in the first leg might have been a better result. The fans wouldn't have been so complacent and provided the extra vocal support knowing that we had to win. The players might have approached the game with more intensity and desire. In reality we got caught in a deadly game of cat and mouse and were more concerned about not conceding than actually trying to win the game. Sevilla grew in confidence as we just sat off them and let the game dangerously drift towards 90 minutes. Indecisiveness beat us more than anything else and I always thought it was a risky tactic bringing Pogba on for the last 20 minutes at 0-0. His defensive liability's have cost us on several occasions and I thought he got caught out of position for the first goal. In hindsight it might have been better sticking with the defensive mindset hoping that one of our attackers could nick us a goal seen as though that had been the plan since KO.

OT isn't a particularly partisan arena and hasn't been for a long time. Decent atmosphere's can still be generated but they tend to be saved for the likes of L'pool, City and the more fashionable European teams. The game is more civilised, the stadium vast, our vocal support is scattered around the stadium and the vast swathes of corporate seating especially in the Stratford End do little to enhance this. What I will say is that the history and size of the place must still make it a magical place to play. There are not many places in Europe where over 75,000 people turn up every week. If that's not support then I don't know what it. There is no doubt the crowd, especially in some games need something to get them going and the passive, insipid stuff served up on Tuesday night was never going to lend itself to a feverish and intimidating atmosphere. What it did prompt however was frustration, nervousness and by the end dissent.

16 Mar 2018 06:13:11
Top post Dan. Sums it up perfectly. You talk of atmosphere just look again at the Camp Nou the other night against Chelsea. It was a joy to behold 95000 Catalonians singing there hearts out waving flags. At OT we get the out little screech before kick off in the bigger games, but that about as good as it gets. I don’t remember a decent atmosphere since the semi against Barcelona in 2008.

The main crux of most of this for me personally particularly this season ion these pages especially is the stark realisation of what’s being served up across the road. We’ve never played anything like that and our most entertaining side was the 94’ one.

It’s a dark period we are going to have to get through unfortunately the problem we have is that Mourinho as well as ofher managers don’t really have any answer to it. Who’is there out there if Mourinho go’s.

16 Mar 2018 06:32:31
So, LVG served up crap football but won the FA Cup and was sacked after finishing 5th. Jose wins the League Cup and Europa Cup and finishes 6th and gets huge funds to continue building.

This year the football has regressed as the season has gone on. Look at our results and see how the goals have dried up and the performances have gradually worsened.

I don’t think it’s a happy camp, there are murmurings from the dressing room apparently. The display against Seville was the culmination of recent months, there is the odd bright spot but then we get back to the turgid approach that Jose seems to enjoy.

Yes, yes, I know we are second but since the first international break I have rarely enjoyed our games. Arsenal away was a great result but a very tough game to watch. Liverpool last week was a great first half but a painful second one.

Pogba has been bought but doesn’t seem happy and we are not seeing the best of him. Sanchez appears to have been an impulse buy for a position where we already have options. The players are not playing to their potential, they have to take some responsibility for that but is there anyone on here who doesn’t want to see us go out and attack teams?

I’m firmly off the fence, Jose’s comments post match Tuesday were appalling, he seemed sanguine about the defeat and the manner of it. If we finish second and win nothing is that an improvement? On paper I guess it is but are we playing better now than last year? I think not.

16 Mar 2018 07:49:30
Chris i agree we have some good players. Just like pep had when he arrived at city.
But the fondations start at the back. We are a house with a lovely kitchen and sitting room but it falls down because the foundations are crap.
Pep could not have city playing the way they are when he had zabaleta sagna cliche klorov nolito navas mangala stones fernando etc so he dumped them and got proper players to compliment the good ones he had.
Sterling looks better sane looks better otimendi looks better.
We need to surround the good players we have with better than valencia smalling jones fellaini herrera rojo jones blind shaw darmian. None of tbem have played consistently well under 2 3 or 4 managers.
Get rid of the sub standard players that have under achived for years.
Nobody can make a silk purse out of sows ears not even pep.

{Ed001's Note - ah but if Pep had a sow's ear it would be acknowledged by all as the greatest sow's ear in the history of the world.}

16 Mar 2018 08:15:48
It's hard to get excited about a dog turd and that's what we've been served up for the last 5 and you could argue 7 years. When the football has been so uninspiring for so long is it really a surprise that it's a bit flat at OT?

As for Mourinho I'd prefer to spend the rest of the season hounding him out of the club. I don't care whether that's toxic or not but the sooner we get rid of the misfit we can hopefully recruit a manager who will FINALLY play some football.

16 Mar 2018 08:51:33
Ken - what amazes me is that most people are critical of the defence, yet what has José done about it. We signed Bailly who in my opinion is our best CB, only problem is I'm guessing he has missed about 40% of the games since he signed. Not much to build a defence around if your best defender misses that many games. We signed Lindelof, who at best can be described as a work in progress, again not started 50% of the games. José has not addressed the FBs and his two CB signings miss on average at least 50% of games.
I believe that we set up ultra defensively in some games to compensate for our back 4 weakness so other players are sacrificed. Some will point out that we don't concede many goals, true enough but at what cost to the other aspects of our team.
For a manager who believes in strong defences José has not got a very good record at overhauling ours.

16 Mar 2018 14:52:48
Ed 001 do you not agree?

{Ed001's Note - I was kidding mate, but it wouldn't matter how good the team was Jose would still play the same way.}



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