LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 07: Anderson of Manchester United attempts to close down Edin Dzeko of Manchester City during the FA Community Shield match sponsored by McDonald's between Manchester City and Manchester United at Wembley Stadium on August 7, 2011 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
The recent friendly Community Shield challenge between City and United is causing a stir within the moderate City fan base.
From what I am reading on different forums is how Mancini's 'style' is terrible. That he is too defensive oriented and that some players (especially Dzeko) do not fit his 'formation'.
I have seen comments about how the defense choked and about how City will never be as good as United.
These recent whisper's are still going and raising questions about whether City have what it takes to overcome United. This game also allowed trolls and opposing fans to take pot shots, some moderates are already jumping ship and to all of that I say 'wait, slow down... take a deep breath and look for the good'.
Historically as you can see City have been under United for some time. Although not bad compared to some other statistics, it is well known that United have had the upper hand for quite a while in terms of games and League titles.
Cups however have been a different matter. City have won 3 out of 5 competitions held for the League Cup between the two sides.
Food for thought.
As for people complaining about how defensive Mancini plays, as far as I am concerned his 'style' has won us 4 out of 5 recent matchup's and 1 loss against a team many believe will win the EPL once again and compete in the CL until the closing stages.
There is no argument from me that City faded in the second half and that there we're hiccups along the way.
However, for a team who is beginning to make constant mistakes during a match and still take out everything the opposing side has is very rare.
Wins are not the only indication of whether a team is considered elite, you can find more to talk about when a team is playing at their worst then their best. City today showed us the old mentality. It was ugly, it was bad, I could go as far as to say that I threw up a little that I had to wake up so early in the morning to watch a horrific second half. Especially when the game winner came from someone who just recently was commenting about how City have no one that can score. In light of all this though, there were many positives to be taken out of this game for us to look into the future.
The first one is that we were able to put goals on the scoreboard against a team that is considered untouchable by the Blue Moon. (Good pun right?)
Second is that Dzeko is beginning to understand the role he plays and seems to have more confidence. A low cracking shot from distance put the Blues up 2-0 right towards the end of the first half. He needs more improvement on long distance shots however it showed that he still has potential which is always an upside.
Third is that it took United 90+ minutes to find a third goal against a hiccuping defense. As I mentioned before, despite this game the off season has been rather successful. An Aguero signing and a 4-1 away record make me feel proud of what this team will be able to accomplish.
Mancini is beginning to get scrutinized for his recent 'defensive' tactics, however people must remember his same tactics have allowed us to win an FA Cup and end a 35 year draught. He has created one of the strongest defenses in the EPL who despite the recent loss are considered the best asset City have. This is no junior high school team. These are real contenders. Mancini's style has proved to be a damper for quite a few teams in the EPL. Especially with a physical specimen such as Micah Richards and an accurate anchor such as Nigel.
As for the comments about Dzeko not fitting inside Mancini's mold, I must say that he is gelling quite nicely. 2 goals in back to back games against heavyweight Inter Milan and an EPL arch enemy United make me think that he is doing quite nicely. His eagerness has also increased as you can tell whenever the ball goes into the opponents half he is scrambling around. I don't understand where people are watching when they come up with comments that he is 'slow'.
It looks very likely that Dzeko will improve as the season goes on. Especially when paired with Aguero once he gets a feel for City's style.
I told a friend of mine this just recently, a good coach will get rid of a good formation faster then he will get rid of a good player. Formation does not translate to skill. Skill however does translate to formation. There is more that goes on with Mancini's coaching then setting up a 4-5-1 and letting the players loose on the field.
There we're negatives within this game and hopefully City will see this and figure out their mistakes and improve on them so as to not create them at a later date when playing crucial games in their massive task of conquering multiple pieces of silverware.