After a rough second season in the Premier League, things are looking quite bright for Sergio Aguero and Manchester City, at least when they’re playing at home, as they achieve another devastating win (6-0 this time) over a title rival, possibly even brushing them aside for good.
Things went right from the first moment for Manchester City, as Hugo Lloris made a huge error to start the match, and a half cross, half chip from Jesus Navas signaled the beginning of the celebrations. The blitz continued, and by the end of the first half it was 3-0. Tottenham tried to change things, but it was too late, and just like in the derby against Manchester United, there was only one team on the pitch, adding three more goals after the break, when things usually calm down a bit.
Manchester City are now perfect, six-of-six, at home. Why is none of this aggressive, quick-playing and thinking form finding its way to their away matches, where they’ve won only once in 12 games? Manuel Pellegrini must have the answers hidden somewhere, only he hasn’t found the note yet.
The one touch football Pellegrini loves to see was at its finest on the day, and usually is when Manchester City play at home, picking up some impressive results, the biggest wins we’ve seen from any team this season: 4-1 over Manchester United, 4-0 over Newcastle, 5-0 over Wigan, 7-0 over Norwich, 5-2 over CSKA Moscow and 3-1 over Everton.
The opponents were disappointing. Are Spurs that much of a one-man team, and do not belong among the leaders with Gareth Bale out of the picture? All the money thrown at the squad didn’t make them anywhere near the team they’re trying to emulate in its building system, as the difference in player quality shouldn’t be this big. However, on the sidelines, and on the pitch in terms of energy and cohesion, this was a match between teams from two different planets.
The comparison between Alvaro Negredo and Roberto Soldado, which has been going on for quite some time, going back to their La Liga days, was decided in favor of one side. Negredo scored a beautiful goal (fifth of the match) while Soldado barely touched the ball. Tottenham had the advantage in possession, but actually started playing or doing anything with the ball only after they were behind by four goals.
Sergio Aguero is playing the best football of his life right now, better than in his first season with the team. Something about his blend between selfishness and team player is exactly where it should be, and with no problems coming from his knees, his unique style of running and attacking the box is almost impossible to stop given the right amount of space. In the end, Spurs players were fouling him out of frustration, giving up on any attempt to actually stop him with clever defending.
Title contenders? There’s no doubt that at their best, Manchester City look like a better team than the rest of their title-rivals. However, these kind of performances can’t be a thing of home form alone, and without some improvement on their travels, this will be a tale about a team with style, but lacking something on the way to true greatness.