CIty 0 - 0 United
Valencia Bailly Blind Darmian
Carrick Fellaini(s/o) Herrera
Mkhi(Fosu-Mensah) Rashford(Young) Martial(Lingard)
The game might have ended in a draw but I am quite pleased with our boys. They showed that they are willing to fight for the red shirt and produced a disciplined performance. Bailly was excellent at the back. My man of the match.
The game was on a knife's edge, both teams could have won it. City hit the post during the first half and dominated the second half during which they barely gave us a sniff of the ball. We had two glorious chances during the first half when both Mkhitaryan and, later, Herrera could have put us in front.
The second half was all about defending; a typical display by a Mourinho team. Our back four barely put a foot wrong today. I must say that I was quite surprised with both Blind and Darmian. They produced a fine display to help Bailly and Valencia guard DDG's goal. Michael Carrick didn't do too bad either. He's been a bit below-par this season but that's totally understandable now that he's pushing 36. Prior to the game, we learned that Guardiola is a big fan of Carrick and his performance today explained exactly why a coach who's managed some amazing midfield players singled out Michael Carrick before the game.
Martial and Rashford were ok. Both had to defend during the second half and that is not their game. Herrera was his usual busy self but he should have scored late in the first half.
Perhaps today's biggest disappointments were Mkhitaryan and Fellaini. Mkhi didn't really do anything noticeable. He's getting a habit of going missing in the big games which is a tad worrying. Fellaini provided the steel we needed in midfield but he's definitely no Pogba. His passing left a lot to be desired and what he did in the final minutes was very stupid. Why head-butt Aguero when you were shown the yellow card a few second earlier? Gave the ref little choice but to send him off. Thankfully it did not cost us the point.
I am pleased. This was a good performance away from home against a side that, I've got to admit, is better than us. With so many Utd players missing, they definitely had better players available today. Hopefully we do not screw this performance by dropping points against Swansea at Old Trafford. Win Liverpool slipping last weekend, getting into top 4 looks a tad more realistic now but I won't be holding my breath.