Manchester City: How The Players Rated vs Swansea


Yes, Manchester City won against 5th placed side Swansea City; a side frequently praised for their graft against the Premier League‘s top sides — so well done. They even did it without an Aguero goal, an achievement that didn’t look likely to happen, thanks to Aguero’s fiery form. The way the match played out is a lot more worrying than the result suggests. Not only did City go down one within 10 minutes, but they — particularly in the first 25 minutes — made Swansea look like the reigning champions. Pellegrini is certainly safe for now, but if Manchester City don’t get the finger out more consistently, I have no doubt that he’ll be gone.



Joe Hart: 7 – Apart from the Swansea goal and a smattering of half-chances, Joe Hart had little to do. Was very nearly caught out by a wicked deflection in the last few minutes, but wouldn’t have been to blame.

Pablo Zabaleta: 6.5 – Given the trouble Swansea’s Jefferson Montero could have created on Pablo’s side, the defender managed to get forward often enough to threaten Fabianski in the Swansea goal, but he never really took advantage of the chances he got. Zabaleta had low key performance by his standards but still contributed to the attack through some good link up play. He was also responsible for Montero’s ineffectiveness.

Martin Demichelis: 7 – Was very solid, he adds another great center back to City’s defensive equation — an equation which includes an injury prone Kompany and an off-the-pace Mangala. Wilfried Bony resorted to dropping deep to get the ball, which speaks to Demichelis’ ability to trouble one of the league’s best strikers.

Vincent Kompany: 6 – I’m not sure whether it was the calf injury he picked up recently, but Vinnie wasn’t quite up to par. An imposing figure like Bony would usually be given a strong challenge, but he was beaten in tussles a bit too often. It would be best to take the risk and give him a rest.

One of City’s top performers against the Swans was Gael Clichy, who relished the chance to play without competition from Aleks Kolarov.

Gael Clichy: 7.5 –  With Kolarov out injured, City’s usual left-back speculation wasn’t an issue ahead of the game. Given how Clichy played, I’m kind of glad that Kolarov wasn’t there to push him off the team-sheet, as he was one of Manchester City’s best performers. He refused to be beaten by Dyer, and very nearly pulled off a ‘goal of the season’ contender with a whipped left foot shot that was just tipped onto the woodwork by Fabianski.


Jesus Navas: 6.5 – *sigh* I’m growing less and less fond of Navas’ playing style match by match. That being: jutting in and out on the right flank, stuttering for a few seconds, 25% of the time putting a cross in, and 75% of the time hitting the ball off the nearest defender to win a corner.

Fernandinho: 7 – Put in a good shift. I didn’t notice much of Fernandinho, which is always a good sign given how his only problem tends to be making mistakes in key areas.

Yaya Toure: 7.5 –  Played well, although he probably covered the least amount of ground compared to the rest of the team. Toure isn’t much of a runner anymore, but his passes were pretty accurate. His goal was a classic glimpse of Yaya magic — traveling with train-like pace and power through the defense, then placing the ball in with contrasting finesse. I still believe he should be sold at the nearest opportunity (at the right price of course), as he still doesn’t look like returning to the world-beating form that characterized last season.

Yaya Toure hasn’t yet ‘returned to form’ from last year, but is moulding himself into a deep lying playmaker rather than an attacking threat.

Samir Nasri: 8 – Like Yaya, Nasri’s performances this season have failed to meet expectation — barring a few exceptions. With resident magician David Silva out, Nasri took the play-making bull by the horns, and constructed orgasmic passes without any of the egotistical laziness that he’s unfortunately become known for. Drifted past Swansea defenders like they weren’t there, and almost made City fans forget about Silva… Almost.


Sergio Aguero: 7 – Wasn’t as lethal as usual, but any time he was given the bal,l he made it his duy to race towards goal and not lose possession, testing the Swans’ defense early on, and at various times throughout the game.

Stevan Jovetic: 7.5 – Doesn’t offer as much variety up front with Aguero as Dzeko, but sometimes ‘variety’ DOESN’T PERFORM AT ALL, AS IF ‘VARIETY’ IS NOT EVEN ON THE PITCH! Although he’s not a crossing option per se, Jovetic’s link up play and skill really helps Man City open up stubborn defenses.

Should Stevan Jovetic keep himself fit, Edin Dzeko could return to his former position in the team as a ‘supersub’


Frank Lampard: 7 – Offered a calm when the final minutes got manic. Nearly played a fantastic ball to Aguero to send the game out of reach, but it just wasn’t to be.

James Milner: 6.5 – Solid as ever.

Fernando: 6 – None of the shakiness some fans tend to criticize him for. Like Milner and Lampard, solidified the team.