What a performance from start to finish, this is close competition for the top performance this season. No matter who it was, if they had the ball they were going to attack the West Ham defense at full-speed. In terms of form, City really picked the time to play West Ham, who was coming off a horrific 5-0 defeat to Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup. With plenty of injuries, it was going to be a tough day for the Hammers and it certainly was.
Negredo who had a night to remember in a City uniform started the scoring parade. After Yaya sent a lovely weighted ball to Negredo who found himself behind the West Ham defense, and he wasted no time in putting in the goal. From that moment on City’s intent was obvious, and we were rewarded with chance, after chance. Negredo, who ended with a hat trick, doubled his goal tally shortly after his first, when Dzeko played him through and the Spaniard made no mistake, again. Yaya added a goal to his fantastic day as he went from midfield to the box and fired the ball into the back of the net.
The second half was really no different, and it started quickly. Four minutes into the second 45 Negredo found a deflected ball, and curved a lovely shot into the back of the net. Hat trick city. Dzeko, whose efforts were immense, finally got a goal to his name in this game, as Clichy found him making a run at the near post. Right before the end of the 90, Dzeko doubled his goal tally with a bullet of a shot from right inside the box. The goal came after the youngster Rony Lopez played on Kolarov, whose lovely cross found the Bosnian unmarked.
Not that he has performed poorly per say, but Negredo has had many near misses recently, and I hope this game is his “coming (back) out” party. He was simply a man possessed today, and I don’t think there was anyone in the world that could have stopped it. And I may be wrong, but I believe Dzeko was playing a bit deeper behind Negredo today essentially like what Aguero plays when he is in. This allowed Negredo to make solo runs at West Ham’s defense and get free; something he showed is a master at.
I’m sure we all shared a moment of panic when we saw Yaya hit the ground, because I know I certainly did. Before that knock he was playing a great all around game, and luckily, he was able to shake it off and get back into the game. Not to mention he had beautiful goal; started and ended by himself.
This was a huge victory especially given the score gap and lack of injuries, because it allows us to rest key players during the next leg. With a jam-packed schedule this is a huge weight lifted off of Pellegrini’s mind. This was a great result for City as we head to St. James Park to face Newcastle Sunday. AND, last but not least, SAVE SOME GOALS FOR SUNDAY, SEESH.
Disclaimer: The 6’s for Vinny and Joleon are because they really didn’t have to do much.
Negredo (9.9 MotM) – 9.9 because, well, that’s what they do in FIFA. Hat trick hero. The first goal lit the fire for Negredo and certainly that haircut is the reason he played so well, right? Kidding, but I hope this effort can lead to more this Sunday (and beyond). He was utterly perfect today; it was truly a gift to watch him.
Dzeko (9) – Good connection with Negredo for the second goal. Playing below his partner has really helped the two connect. After some hard work, he was finally able to find the back of the net twice, good sign.
Nasri (8) – Looking to attack defense, same with Silva, and has intent in every pass and movement. He was back to the form of a few games ago, and that’s a good sign ahead of our tough game against Newcastle this weekend.
Silva (8) – Tough start with his passing, but got back into the game. He partnered magnificently well with Nasri in the midfield. Happy birthday you beautiful man, you!
Yaya (9) – Beautiful pass to find Negredo behind the West Ham defense, and he held possession well in midfield all game. Close second for man of the match, as he put in a full effort today, but Negredo was just superb.
Garcia (7) – Good at winning areal battles, defensively and offensively, and was a true threat on corners. We were too hypnotic with the ball to notice his defensive work.
Clichy (7) – Best defender for us by far, not that there was much competition, and especially great defending, 1 v 1, against Downing who seemed to be the only true attacking threat for West Ham. Good low ball to find Dzeko for a goal.
Lescott (6) – Ummmmm, good job, good effort? Haha
Kompany (6) – Traveling Vinny?
Zabaleta (7) – Early on he was making his trademark runs down the wing, and down the middle of the field. His value cannot be overstated, especially given the hole we have at right back.
Pantilimon (7) – Good game, came for the balls in the box he needed too.
Demichelis (N/A) – Glad to see him return from his injury, he was playing extremely well before he was sidelined.
Lopes (6) – RONNNNNNNYYYY!!!! Good to see him get some playing time against a PL club. And, what a pass to Kolarov!
Kolarov (6) – Always a threat to send a cross into the box that can cause issues, today was no different. Lovely cross to find Dzeko. He see’s you when you’re sleeping, and knows when you’re awake.