Gary Neville really doesn’t like teams sitting back against Manchester City, and he has heaped criticism on Chelsea for their approach at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday.
The Blues travelled to Manchester on the back of a defeat in the same city last week, which left them trailing behind the rest of the top four competitors.
Antonio Conte elected to leave both Olivier Giroud and Alvaro Morata on the bench, opting to play Eden Hazard alone up front as a false nine. Hazard was visibly frustrated by the lack of support and quality service, as he chased long balls and dead ends until he was withdrawn late on. City won the match 1-0 thanks to a Bernardo Silva goal.
Neville was not impressed by the Chelsea performance, saying that while the system was actually okay, he was disappointed by the sheer lack of intent.
“In terms of the approach, it wasn’t bad”, Neville said on his Sky Sports podcast. “It was the lack of intent and passing of the performance which was so passive that made it difficult to watch.
“I’m not sure how the game just drifted, drifted, drifted for 90 minutes with no reaction from the sidelines.
Neville was extremely critical of Newcastle’s approach against Manchester City back in December, a game that also ended 1-0 to City. But the former Valencia manager says Chelsea were worse.
“I was very critical of Newcastle earlier on this season for, what I believed to an unacceptable first 25 to 30 minutes. Chelsea gave us an unacceptable 90 minutes.”
Chelsea fans, let us know your thoughts in the comments below.