Manuel Pellegrini’s first season in charge of Manchester City has started off with an interesting twist to what most fans predicted.
While they continue to run riot at the Etihad, humiliating every team that visits, City look indecisive away from home, with just one Premier League win on the road so far this campaign and an extra-time victory over Newcastle United at St. James’ Park in Round 4 of the Capital One Cup.
Losses to Aston Villa, Sunderland, Cardiff City and Chelsea have prevented them from topping the division and mounting a serious challenge to bring the league title back to the blue half of Manchester.
Pellegrini’s side looks devastating at home, scoring 35 goals at the Etihad already, which is more than any other top-flight team have managed both home and away all season. But they’ve managed to find the net on just 12 occasions on the road, which will be big cause for concern for Pellegrini.
Added to the pressure of improving away results, Pellegrini is expected to win at least one piece of silverware in his first Etihad season. The Capital One Cup provides City with the perfect opportunity to do just that, especially as they have avoided rivals United and Chelsea by drawing Championship side Leicester City.
However, if they had been drawn at home you could have bet your house on them progressing through to the semi-finals with ease, but a trip to the King Power Stadium doesn’t appear to be as straight forward considering how their season has gone so far.
Promotion hopefuls Leicester saw off Premier League Fulham in Round 4 and will believe that they can cause arguably the upset of Round 5 by disposing of travelsick City. The Foxes’ form at the King Power Stadium is also pretty strong, with just one loss in the Championship so far this season.
Despite this, though, City have to put an end to their away day woes sooner rather than later and it’s all but certain that, as soon as they regain their confidence away from the Etihad, their season will be notched up a gear and they’ll be there-or-there-abouts in all the competitions in which they’re competing for this season.
The prospect of a Capital One Cup semi-final will be an attractive one for Pellegrini, and the strength in depth he has at his disposal suggests he can perhaps be confident that the Citizens can get the job done.
The most important thing for the Chilean boss, though, is to become more consistent away from home, and a trip to Leicester in the Capital One Cup could be the perfect place to start.
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