Arsenal 3-1 Manchester City: Poor defensive
show from City leaves Pellegrini pondering new arrivals
“If we buy someone, then OK. If not, I
think we have got the squad to solve our problems,"
says new City boss
Manuel Pellegrini might just need to get the cheque book
out again , writes Simon Mullock at the Olympic Stadium
The new Manchester City boss boasted to
fans on Thursday night that a near-£100million
investment in new players has given him the best squad
in the Premier League.
After seeing the Blues blown apart by Arsenal in
Helsinki, he may be having second thoughts.
It might have only been a money-spinning friendly,
but, on this evidence, the Gunners look much better
prepared for the new season than City.
Theo Walcott, Aaron Ramsey and Olivier Giroud all
came out on top in one-on-ones with Joe Hart as Arsene
Wenger’s men gave a sell-out crowd in the Olympic
Stadium a real exhibition of top-class finishing.
Some of City’s defending, though, was shambolic.
Pellegrini inherited a team that has boasted the
meanest rearguard in the Premier League for the last
But, at times, Vincent Kompany and Joleon Lescott
looked like strangers.
And, with Matija Nastasic set to miss the opening
month of the new campaign through injury, Pellegrini
will now surely step up his efforts to land a new
centre-back before City’s opener against Newcastle.
Pellegrini said: “Of course, the result is not the best
way to prepare, but I don’t think the score describes
exactly what happened here.
“We had a lot of chances to score – and didn’t.
“I think Arsenal only had maybe three or four chances
and scored three goals.
“We had some problems defending and we will try to
improve that this week.
“We will see this week what we need.
“If we buy someone, then OK. If not, I think we have
got the squad to solve our problems.
“We have conceded too many in pre-season and will
have to arrange it.”
Going forward, City look like a team that will create
plenty of chances and, on another day, Alvaro Negredo
could have had a hat-trick. Negredo did net City’s
80th-minute consolation, but, by then, the Gunners were
out of sight.
It was all positive for the London team, who clearly
had the bulk of the support in the historic
39,000-capacity stadium. Jack Wilshere looked back to
his brilliant best before being replaced at half-time.
And more good news for England boss Roy Hodgson is
the form of Walcott.
The Arsenal wideboy opened the scoring in the ninth
minute when he produced a burst of pace to leave Gael
Clichy standing, before lifting a clever finish over
Bacary Sagna also saw Hart tip his long-range shot
against the post.
But City should have been level by the break, with
James Milner, Negredo and Edin Dzeko all wasting clear
Negredo twice threatened after the half-time break,
before the Gunners floored City with two goals in four
First, Ramsey timed his run to perfection to collect
Sagna’s pass, then skipped around Hart before
And then substitute Giroud capitalised on some
desperate defending by Kompany to loop a deft shot over
the oncoming Hart.
Wenger said: “It was only a friendly, but our
attitude was very good.
“We were highly focused – and that’s good.
“I don’t know what this win will do, but it should
lift our confidence.
“We have a number of players going away on
international duty now and we will have to wait until
they come back to prepare for our first game.”
Bayern Munich 2-1 Manchester City: Blues let win
over European champions slip in Audi Cup final
Negredo's first goal since move from Sevilla
gave Pellegrini's men the lead but harsh penalty
decision let hosts back in
Manchester City have lost to hosts Bayern Munich in the
final of the Audi Cup pre-season tournament, despite scoring
City led Euroeapn champions Bayern through summer
signing Alvaro Negredo before goals from Thomas Muller and
Mario Mandzukic turned the game around.
After a quiet opening, Bayern should have taken the lead
in the 29th minute, but Javi Martinez took Arjen Robben's
far-post cross away from his better-placed defensive
City, who scored five first-half goals to beat AC Milan
in Wednesdays semi, immediately went close against the run
of play when Stevan Jovetic, another newcomer, shimmied
inside onto his right foot and lashed just wide.
Negredo missed out from crosses by Samir Nasri and James
Milner late in the first half, both attempted headers
bobbling harmlessly off the Spaniard's shoulder.
Another, more convincing, header after half-time was
saved, but Negredo opened his account for deposed Premier
League champions City on the hour when he beat Martinez and
fired inside the far post.
The lead lasted only five minutes, though.
Muller tucked away a penalty after Pablo Zabaleta was
penalised for handball.
The decision appeared extremely harsh, with the
Argentinian defender beaten to a header and the ball
rebounding off his trailing arm out of his field of vision.
Mandzukic then stooped to head in Muller's cross - just
beating former City defender Jerome Boateng to the chance -
and make it 2-1.
Edin Dzeko forced a late reaction save from Manuel Neuer
but Bayern held on to win.
In the earlier third-place play-off, AC Milan beat Sao
Paulo 1-0 thanks to Kingsley Boateng's goal early in the
The Ghanaian teenager finished coolly after being picked
out by Urby Emanuelson's long ball.
Manchester City 5-3 AC Milan: Blues run riot in first
half of mad Munich friendly
Blues race into a five-goal lead, then concede
three in six minutes just before half-time as Audi Cup
tournament starts with a bang
Manchester City beat AC Milan 5-3 in an explosive pre-season
friendly in Munich in which all eight goals were scored in the
City stormed into a 5-0 lead before conceding
three times in the final eight minutes before the break.
The closest either side came to adding to the score in the
second half was an Alvaro Negredo shot that struck the crossbar
11 minutes from time.
The first half of this Audi Cup clash had been breathless,
David Silva slotting home City's opener after just three minutes
before two goals in four minutes from Micah Richards and
Aleksandar Kolarov had them 3-0 up midway through the half.
Deposed champions City - fielding a stronger side than Milan
and further on in their preparations - added a fourth in the
32nd minute when Edin Dzeko got the first of his brace.
The second duly rattled in four minutes later when he scored
a fine volley on the turn.
But just in case they thought it was all too easy, Milan then
scored three times in six minutes.
Stephan El Shaaraway broke clear to get the first in the 37th
minute and then stayed alert to score a second two minutes later
when City stopped, waiting for a whistle that never came.
Andrea Petagna suggested a comeback was on when he made it
5-3 in the 42nd minute, but that would prove to be the final
New City manager Manuel Pellegrini sounded slightly amazed
they did so well in the first half-hour, but was not impressed
by what followed.
"It's not normal that we can be beating Milan 5-0 after 30
minutes," said the Chilean.
"But I didn't like the last 15 minutes of the first half,
because I thought we relaxed before the end of the game and in
football you can't do that.
"It's better that this happens now though rather than in the
Premier League so we can sort out these things before it
City will now face hosts Bayern Munich in tomorrow's Audi Cup
final after the German and European champions saw off Brazilians
Sao Paulo 2-0 in the other semi-final.
Man City 1-0 Sunderland: Edin Dzeko scores the winner
as City win in Asia Trophy final
The Bosnian striker struck early, but later skied a
penalty kick as Manuel Pellegrini's men sealed victory in
Edin Dzeko was Manchester City's hero once more as Manuel
Pellegrini's men overcame Sunderland to lift the Barclays Asia
Just as he had done in the semi-final triumph over
South China, Dzeko scored the only goal to give the Blues a
It was not quite a trouble-free victory for City as key
defender Matija Nastastic was stretchered off in the second
half, but they were the better side and only two goal-line
clearances from Craig Gardner kept the score down.
It has been a productive few days for Dzeko. Expected to be
on his way out of the Etihad Stadium this summer, the Bosnian
remains and until reinforcements are brought in to compensate
for the departure of Carlos Tevez and, last season, Mario
Balotelli, so he is destined to remain.
Yaya Toure created the opportunity with a flick-on intended
for Pablo Zabaleta. Wes Brown got there first, but the former
Manchester United man could only turn the ball into the path of
Dzeko, who duly rammed home a brilliant half-volley which flew
in off a post.
Alvaro Negredo should have made it two after being played in
by David Silva but the Spaniard blasted disappointingly over.
Negredo did no better when he was picked out by Dzeko later
on, this time ballooning the ball over from a central position.
City keeper Costel Pantilimon did not have much to do and
even when Emanuele Giaccherini had a chance, his shot went
straight at the Romanian.
Sunderland had a lucky escape just before the break when
Gardner headed Silva's free-kick against his own post, then
clattered into the upright himself as the Black Cats scrambled
With heavy rain falling on an already saturated surface, an
area of approximately 50 yards either side of the halfway line
resembled a bog.
Dzeko was certainly looking suspiciously at it when he skied
a penalty high over the bar midway through the second half.
On this occasion, though, the surface did not seem to be any
more responsible than Dzeko's poor finishing.
City suffered a blow 17 minutes from the end when Nastastic
was stretchered off following an innocuous-looking incident
Following his earlier heroics, Gardner went one better after
Samir Nasri had presented Jesus Navas with a shooting chance,
sliding back to make a brilliant goal-line clearance.
Pantimilon's save from Sebastian Larsson's free-kick ensured
there was no late reprieve for Sunderland.
Supersport United 2
Manchester City 1 Sloppy City Lose Again
Thursday 18th July 2013
MANUEL PELLEGRINI was back home in Santiago as his
Manchester City team were beaten again in South Africa.
The Chilean boss has had to leave the club’s training camp here
in South Africa due to a family issue back at home.
So assistant boss Brian Kidd was back in charge — although
Pellegrini had left detailed instructions before he departed.
City looked rusty as they went down 2-0 against Supersport United
in Pretoria on Sunday and they got off to a bad start here too.
A disastrous back-pass by Aleksandar Kolarov allowed Bongani
Ndulula to steal in and go round Joe Hart before rolling the ball
MIL THRILL ... James Milner celebrates his
But City hit back quickly and scored their first goal of
Scott Sinclair’s cross should have been headed in by Yaya Toure
but the Ivorian’s flick on fell nicely for James Milner, who
hammered a shot back across the keeper.
It was the English club who looked the more likely winners as
Rodwell saw a low shot smartly saved by the AmaZulu keeper.
Edin Dzeko — who has been promised a new start despite City
spending £40million on new strikers — saw his chance well saved.
The home team made it a Nelson Mandela Day to remember late on
though as Abdul Razak gave away a penalty and Carlington Nyadombo
scored from ths spot.
Reports in Chile suggested the 59-year-old had flown home as his
mother is seriously ill.
Kidd said: “He had to go back to Chile for personal reasons. We
hope he’ll be in Hong Kong on Tuesday morning but we’re not sure.
CITY KICKER ... Bongani Ndulula rounds Joe
Hart to level
“Obviously you want the boss here but he prepared the team right
for tonight and his backroom staff have been superb with their
attention to detail.”
Meanwhile, there was drama after the game as AmaZulu coach
accused fans of showing Mandela a lack of respect by staying away on
his 95th birthday.
The Moses Mabhida Stadium was less than half full for the game
and Craig Rosslee said: “It’s very disappointing that for a man who
spent nearly his entire life behind bars, I think we should have
shown a bit more consideration for the anniversary.”
Manuel Pellegrini's reign at
Manchester City starts with a defeat
Sunday 14th July 2003 :
Yaya Touré is tackled by Mogogi Gabonamong and Sameehg
Doutie as Manchester City were beaten 2-0 by SuperSport United.
Manuel Pellegrini's tenure as the Manchester City manager opened
with a 2-0 defeat by SuperSport United as the side began their
two-game tour of South Africa.
The Senegalese striker Mame Niang headed SuperSport ahead in the
56th minute and the South Africa international Kermit Erasmus beat
City's reserve goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon one-on-one in the 82nd
minute for the second at Loftus Versfeld.
Edin Dzeko forced a double save from Ronwen Williams in the 19th
minute and James Milner was denied in the 73rd by a combination of
the substitute goalkeeper Boalefa Pule and a diving block by a
Manchester City's new signing Fernandinho started in a subdued debut
for City before Pellegrini made wholesale changes to the Premier
League team's lineup in the second half.