A little over four days have passed since the Carabao Cup triumph and Manchester City travelled once more to the nations Capital. Goalkeeping changes made to both sides now see the strongest lineup for both. Out went Ospina, in came Cech. For City it was Ederson in for Bravo.
The performance itself, from the visitors, was fantastic. Two fantastic goals, and another from the man of the match, saw the tie over a little over 30 minutes. The second half was not so great, but that was only because City felt it was over as a tie.
And the slowing of the pace in the second half was surely with Sundays game against Chelsea in mind. Certainly a bigger rival now with Arsene determined to leave the club exactly where he found it…mid table. For City it was another good performance, both individually, and as a team. The win leaves them five games away from the title, and probably the earliest wrap up in EPL history.
I will focus on that and talking points later. For now though it’s all about our player ratings:
Ederson – 8.
Guy was again solid between the sticks. There was that one rush of blood when he ‘did a Bravo’. Coming out to nail Otamendi was not the best thing considering our injury list. That said, maybe it was payback for giving away the penalty.
Speaking of the penalty. It was a vital save for me. Had Arsenal got a goal back with over half an hour left, it could have made for a difficult remainder of the game. As it was Arsenal missed the penalty (well Ederson saved it!) and their heads dropped.
Walker – 7.
He loves winding up the Arsenal crowd! A couple of moments had me smiling to myself, especially the drawn out free-kick he was about to take. Thought overall he had a good game, which is what I have said after all but a few games. He offers a good option going forward and, Wigan aside, is reasonably reliable at the back.
Kompany – 7.
Two full 90 minutes under his belt, and he looked great. I was certainly nervous when I saw he was i the lineup, but it worked out.Looked solid at the back and, a couple of loose passes aside, looked good with his distribution.
Otamendi – 7.
Gave away the penalty, and was booked early on. Other than those two negatives he was, once again, solid.
Danilo – 6.
Didn’t do too bad, but maybe not a 7. Got forward well both on the left, and right later on. A decent player to have in a bind as he can play several positions. Just not sure he’s shown enough to keep Walker or Mendy (when fit) out.
De Bruyne – 7.
Cruise control for Kevin. Didn’t need him to step up and almost forgot he was playing at points. Certainly I think we’ll need more of his inspirational passing on Sunday.
Stepped into Fernandinho’s shoes well on Sunday, and did so again today. Although he wasn’t really tested during the 90 minutes. He will have tougher games in that position while Fernandinho is out.
Silva – 8.
Scoring goals is becoming a habit for David Silva now. The Spaniard has always been good outside the box and getting balls through. Recently he has begun to find himself on the end of decent balls, and converting.
Bernardo – 8.
I love the little Portuguese Pixie! Great ball control, opened himself up well for the first goal. Plays likes he loves playing!
No goal and I don’t remember too many chances on goal. This could be looked at negatively, but I think he is playing more of an expansive role. Tonight I saw him out wide chasing balls and deeper winning balls. This is what Pep wants from a striker and Sergio is obliging.
Sane – 9.
Two fantastic goal, the first in particular, he was involved in. Starting almost with chalk in his boots, he ran past four or five Arsenal defenders before passing to Bernardo.
Showing skills that have me excited for his future.
Zinchenko (sub on 72) – 7.
Came on with a little over 15 minutes left, and played well. Another good prospect for the future and improving with every game/