Manchester City carried on with their 100 per cent record with a win against Bournemouth in the Premier Leaugue at the Etihad
Pep Guardiola labelled Bournemouth as City’s toughest opponents so far this season (sorry Jose), yet City romped home 4-0 with their best performance of the season. I shall do my best to describe the action for you, but there were times in this game where a mere journalist could not find the words to express the talents of Kevin de Bruyne (which leads me on to remind you to check out our competition for City tickets).
If this game was an album: Endless – Frank Ocean.
Perhaps ‘Endless’ isn’t technically an album, but I’m running with this anyway because that 45-minute-long musical masterpiece is pure beauty! The attacking onslaught from City today was truly endless, as time and time again one of their many attacking players would start a beautiful move. Whether that was Kelechi Iheanacho, Kevin de Bruyne, Nolito, Raheem Sterling, or even centre-back Alecksander Kolarov, the attacks came from all different angles.
Stat of the Game
Kelechi Iheanacho now has 10 goals from 14 shots on target in his Premier League career. That’s more prolific than Nigel Farage’s record of 9 bullseyes out of 14 darts at the Red Lion. Gwarn Nige!
Man of the Match
Raheem Sterling was dribbling more than a Fresher in Fifth in an excellent performance, as twice he beat five or six Bournemouth players as he moved in from the wing and found himself in the box. The City fans were loving it and ironically boo’d Sterling every time he did something notable, but Kevin de Bruyne takes the crown for man of the match this time.
Pep Guardiola after the game said that Lionel Messi is on “a table of his own” but Kevin could “sit at the table next to him” and when you consider de Bruyne’s performances against United and Bournemouth, it is really hard to disagree with Guardiola. De Bruyne was simply running the show from all angles, and scored a genius goal. The goal came in the 15th minute from a free kick, as de Bruyne drilled the ball under the wall and into the net. Under. The guy is that good – he said ‘jump,’ the defenders said ‘how high?’ as he slotted the ball under them. After the game KdB (he’s going to be mentioned a lot, so let’s just call him that) said that Pep Guardiola had been studying the Bournemouth wall for some time. Wow, and I thought studying History was boring. KdB also played a hand in all three of the other goals…
Goals Goals Goals
The goals in this City team can literally come from anywhere. The goals today came from the striker (Iheanacho), a winger (Sterling), an attacking midfielder (Kevin de Messi), and a deeper midfielder (İlkay Gündoğan), and even Alecksander Kolarov from centre-back had two opportunities to score from long range. This is how this game’s goals went in.
1. The first goal was from KdB, and I have already described in the paragraph above—I’m not going to describe it again because frankly I have other things to do. The washings on the line and I can see a cloud moving in.
2. Personally this was my favourite goal of the day from a superb counter-attack. The move stemmed from a Bournemouth free-kick, as Iheanacho found himself with the ball in his own half. City countered in numbers as they do so often, so he played in KdB, who in a matter of moments slotted the ball through to Sterling perfectly so that he was one-on-one with the keeper. Cleverly Sterling set up a classic Fifa16 goal by passing sideways to Iheanacho, who scored in an effectively open net. Eddie Howe almost threw his Xbox controller out the window.
3. Bournemouth came out for the second half determined to show City that they could not walk all over them! City scored on the 47th minute. The same three players combined but in a different order this time. KdB played in Iheanacho who was forced out a little wide so pulled it across the box for Sterling to tap in. The ball was cleared by a defender ‘off the line’ so nobody in the stadium had any clue whether to cheer or do a British tut, but the referee said it crossed the line and replays indicate that the ball was well over. It had so obviously crossed the line that I thought it was a fella telling a dirty joke at a funeral.
4. City wanted a fourth so KdB turned on his magic shoes yet again! This time he played a diagonal ball through the Bournemouth back four so that Gündoğan could simply lift the ball a little over the keeper and into the net. The pass from KdB was great, but it was the run from Kelechi Iheanacho that took the Bournemouth player’s attention away from Gündoğan and made the goal possible. Gündoğan done-a-guden.
Nolito sees red
Nolito did slightly dampen the mood in the dying moments though with a stupid move. The Spanish winger had a pretty good game, but for some reason he was pretty peeved at the end so wanted to head-butt someone. He was sent off and will miss the next three Premier League games.
Next up is a double header of Swansea away. The first is on Wednesday in the League Cup and the second is on Saturday in the league. Captain Vincent Kompany made the bench for the first time this season against Bournemouth, so we will probably see him again in the next two games, and Sergio Aguero becomes available again for the second of the two games. Nolito, however, will be sat in the stands in an excellent jacket (that man dresses so well).