Football FanCast columnist David Mooney cannot understand the media’s overreaction to his beloved City’s run of form.
This is a crisis. A large crisis. In fact, if you got a moment, it’s a twelve-story crisis with a magnificent entrance hall, carpeting throughout, 24-hour portage, and an enormous sign on the roof, saying ‘This Is a Large Crisis’.
Not my words, but the words of Edmund Blackadder, shortly after finding out he was due to be going over the top. But his words have never been more relevant to a football club than they are today.
No win since the end of September in the league and draws in games they were expected to win, and Manchester City’s season has come off the rails. It’s not as if the club is sitting in 4th in the Premier League, a point ahead of Liverpool, with a game in hand over them and Tottenham (with whom they are on level points with a better goal difference), and an owner who is willing to spend millions on quality players, youth development and top class facilities around the club.
Oh no, wait…
See, statistics are all in the presentation. City are having a bad season because they haven’t won in the last four. Or are they having a good season because they’ve only lost one in ten? And that was in the 117th (or something) minute.
City have a leaky defence, because they’ve conceded 11 goals this season. Or do they, because only Chelsea have kept more clean sheets (City:4, Chelsea: 6)?
Ok, so, the performances against Birmingham and Fulham weren’t great. Nevertheless, both were a point earned – the teams around City have been dropping points of late by losing: Tottenham and Liverpool the prime examples. The hare may set off by bashing in goals and winning games 4-0 or 5-0, but soon enough the hare tires out and starts losing games. Then, the slow but steady tortoise takes the lead. In fact, in that example, one of the two hares nearest City appears to have gone lame, capitulating to Fulham, Sunderland and Chelsea.
And the other’s not doing that much better, running with a limp as it showed Arsenal how to score from kick off and thought it only sporting to let Stoke win at home.
See, I’m quite worried about the mentality of some people in the media and some of the fans. Just because the club has riches beyond imagination doesn’t mean that every game will be won by five or six goals.
Teams will raise their game when City are in town. That’s no reason why City shouldn’t win the game, because it’s up to the team to break down difficult opposition. But we’re forgetting that City are new to this – not once have we finished in a European place in the Premier League, let alone the top four. In fact, the highest we’ve ever finished in the Premier League is eighth.
Just because we have a lot of money doesn’t mean this season will be a walk in the park. It just means that we’re going to have to enjoy trying to beat tough teams to get a top four place instead of despairing trying beat tough teams to stave off relegation.
And, anyway, it’s Burnley next at home. We can’t draw that one… Can we?