Wow, where to start with this one. United have been looking shakey for the last few matches, first against Norwich and then against Liverpool, it couldn’t have been any more different to the first few games of the season where they were like a poor man’s Barcelona and looking awesome.
This 6-1 defeat is United’s biggest ever defeat in the Premier League and I guess Man City have made it quite clear that they intend to be a lot more than just the noisy neighbours – more like the new landlords of Manchester I would think.
First thing’s first. United were awful from the kick-off. There was no fluidity, none of the intricate passing we had seen in the earlier matches and Young and Nani could rarely beat Micah Richards and Gael Clichy on the wings. The defense was a mess, Johnny Evans had another calamitous match which culminated in a sending off at the start of the second half, Ferdinand couldn’t keep up with City’s pacey forwards and even the normally fleet footed Evra struggled to contain Milner.
By the time the game got to 80 minutes, United’s back line literally looked like it had given up or had no more energy left to run and City just went rampant, none of the defenders could keep up and De Gea was pretty much blameless for all the goals.
When Abramovich bought Chelsea the title by buying all the best players it was often said that you need to grow a team and not buy a team. Mancini has bought a team of individuals and somehow got them to play as a team. No doubt they’ll go through a slow patch like all teams go through during the season but on this performance I think City are the team to beat this year.
Oh, and of course, being more than a little bit bitter about the humiliating defeat, I can’t just say congratulations, so let’s not forget the amount of money being spent by Man City; any success they get is because they have taken shortcuts and bought it. The sooner the FIFA financial fair play rules come in the better, we can’t have foreign sugar daddies coming in and manipulating the game like this.