Liverpool were thrashed at the Etihad in the blockbuster clash of the weekend, as the Citizens ran out comprehensive winners in a 5-0 win. Sergio Aguero opened the scoring, before Gabriel Jesus and Leroy Sane scored braces to complete the scoreline. Saido Mane’s red card in the 37th minute meant that Liverpool were up against a rampant City attack, which was ruthless to say the least, with 10 players.
Let’s discuss the 5 key points of the match:
5. Manchester City Show Lethal Attacking Force
Manchester City, spearheaded by two South American strikers, issued a warning to the Premier League rivals in the emphatic win. Fans and Pep Guardiola did wonder if Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus could play together, but the two have been showing great chemistry to the delight of their head coach.
The fact that Manchester City had two great attackers, Bernardo Silva and Leroy Sane, on the bench, shows the depth of attack at the club. Sane, after coming on as a substitute, brought the trademark energy and finesse to the game. Aguero, Jesus, De Bruyne, Sane, Bernardo Silva, David Silva and Raheem Sterling surely form a fearsome attack.
4. Liverpool Lose Their Talisman For 3 Matches
The Premier League player of the month, Sadio Mane, was sent off unceremoniously following a bad foul on the Manchester City goalkeeper. Once Mane was sent off, Liverpool struggled due to the disadvantage of having 10 men on the pitch.
Jurgen Klopp will be gutted to lose Mane for the 3 games after a straight red card. The Senegalese has been the stand-out player, not just in the Liverpool side, but also the Premier League. The Reds might struggle without their star man in the upcoming fixtures.
3. Coutinho Will Be Rushed Back Into Liverpool Squad
The Brazilian had an unstable transfer window, where he didn’t have much control over his future, as he failed to secure his dream switch to Barcelona. However, the tough stand of Liverpool means that the attacking midfielder will need to carry on with the Reds.
As a result of Mane’s red card, it looks likely that Coutinho will be rushed back into the Liverpool squad for the next game. It was expected that the Brazilian will take some time to get back into a good frame of mind after the disappointment of the transfer window, but Jurgen Klopp may not have much choice after today’s incident.
2. Guardiola Looks To Be Ruthless Again
One of the greatest coaches of current generation, if not the greatest, Guardiola looks a different man this season. The Spaniard had to endure his first ever trophy-less season as a manager last season, which was a huge disappointment because of his high standards and a remarkable past.
However, all seems to have changed for the former Barcelona coach this season. He looks fresh with a whole lot of new players in his team this year. The busy transfer window seems to have done the trick, as Guardiola feels that he has a team of his choice.
1. Liverpool Might Be Affected After The Huge Loss
A 5-0 loss is huge for any team, and Liverpool will be gutted to lose with that margin, especially after battering Arsenal in the previous match. The Reds have a trend of beating the big teams under Klopp, which is why this 5-0 thrashing could very well end up leaving a lasting mark on the back of the players’ and the coach’s mind.
The suspension of key man Mane, along with the huge loss, can bring down the team’s morale drastically for the upcoming fixtures. It would be interesting to see how Liverpool react to today’s result.
Written by Shorya Panwar
Has 20+ years of experience managing Schalke in Football Manager 2017. Believes wing-backs are the most complete footballers in the modern/evolved football. Writes weird stuff on his personal blog.