Vincent Kompany (28 league appearances): 7.5/10
A strange season for Captain Kompany…
City’s skipper had a couple of high profile errors – namely, away to Villa and Liverpool – and was also responsible for playing Messi onside in the sequence most responsible for negatively impacting City’s Champions League fortunes. Yet in the final month of the season, in must win games against Everton, Aston Villa and West Ham, Kompany and Demichelis looked almost flawless – with Kompany adopting an almost sweeper like style of play as City threw all men forward to chase the necessary goals.
It seems fair to blame at least a portion of Kompany’s struggles on the revolving door of centre-back partners through the first four months of the season. I think it was rather obvious that Pellegrini intended to partner Nastasic with Kompany (as most would have expected) but that plan was quickly disrupted for two reasons: his inability to adapt to Pellegrini’s high line and his mystery knee injury. In the same way as Nastasic, Lescott also struggled with a high line, forcing Pellegrini to resort to Demichelis.
From my vantage point, it looked as though Kompany originally struggled with Demichelis’ style and what it meant for Kompany. Kompany, when paired with Nastasic or Lescott, is the more aggressive of the two: he would be the risk taker, the one who stepped up higher to mark the forwards who dropped deep. Yet when paired with Demichelis, he was increasingly required to stay deeper and anchor the pairing, as the Argentine assumed Kompany’s previous role. I think it was only in the last three months of the season that the Kompany-Demichelis partnership blossomed, allowing Kompany to look much more the player we’ve been used to.
Oh, and he did this: http://giant.gfycat.com/SardonicImperfectKoodoo.gif