Manchester City were humbled by defending champions Leicester City at King Power Stadium where away side’s defence was questionable along with their goal-keeper and the scoreline of 4-2 in favour of Leicester justifies that point.
Pep Guardiola again tinkered with his lineup including the back-line with Sagna and Stones starting as centre-back, Zabaleta and Kolarov as fullbacks; Navas and de Bruyne flanked number 10s Gundogan and Silva, Iheanacho leading the line in the absence of Aguero who we know has been suspended for 4 games.
Let’s move towards the tactics and analyse both team’s normal positions, further we will also analyse two goals of Leicester where either the City defence or the goal-keeper should have done a lot better:-
The image shows the general positioning of players in the game in both halves, it was pretty much old Leicester in the way they surrendered possession and whenever they got the ball, it was all about two to three passes and they are in at goal. For City, Zabaleta for 30 minutes, tucked into midfield from right-back but when City lost the ball, the Argentine was getting caught centrally far more easily. Communication between Sagna and Stones was horrible and City’s defence looked very twitchy throughout the game.
We will take Leicester’s first and third goal as instances to analyse the City’s defence and what they need to do better in order to stop conceding goals at a trice and canter:-
As we see in the image above, first Leicester goal situation where there was far too much space in between Stones and Kolarov. To start with, Huth won an important header in his own half and Mahrez freed up Slimani in a pocket of space, the Algerian then had an easy pass towards Vardy who was towards goal in between Stones and Kolarov.
If we see the whole picture, Mahrez from right hand side was tucked in so there was no need for the Serbian Kolarov to show Vardy the outside. Instead, both Stones and Kolarov should read the danger and close down the Leicester striker. The decision-making was in question there and the centre-back along with left fullback answered it in a pretty wrong way. Another instance of City’s defence poor in communication and decision-making.
The above image shows the situation of Leicester’s third goal, Fuchs played the ball towards Mahrez who cushioned the ball towards Vardy, the England no 9 was behind Stones and with Sagna in no man’s land, striker was in for goal. In truth, keeper Bravo should have done better in coming out and sniffing the danger. Another instance, where City’s defence was uncertain and communication very bleak.
Even for the second goal, King’s strike was not dead towards the corner, Bravo should have done better on that occasion too.
So, all in all more questions than answers for Pep from last week to this week. If loss against Chelsea was due to lack of defensive communication, loss at the home of champions was pretty much due to that. City have some tough games to go this December and if the defence remains as bleak as this, likes of Arsenal and Liverpool will be itching to get at them.
By Mizgan on 10th December, 2016
twitter – @mizgans