Manchester City were embarrassed by Leicester City on Saturday evening to the scoreline of 4-2. The score makes the game seem closer than it really was, in reality City were outclassed, outworked, and outplayed in every facet of the game. City were opened up within five minutes and essentially started the game down 2-0. It was always going to be tough, but City never even looked alive for most of the match.
With a game like this it’s always difficult to pinpoint what exactly went wrong. The defense was very unprepared for what was the exact same Leicester gameplay they saw last season. The midfield never look cohesive, as if the pouring rain was melting their brains, and Kelechi Iheanacho looked like a ghost because he was completely invisible until he was subbed off.
The bare positives a City supporter might be able to take from this abhorrent game was the play of Nolito and possibly Yaya Touré. The Ivorian brought a sense of play and control back to the midfield and the Spaniard is still a good finisher. With Sergio Agüero still suspended, Nolito could get more looks in the starting XI.
Below are the player ratings for Manchester City vs. Leicester. Expect to see some low numbers and there was no man of the match in this one.
Claudio Bravo: 4.5
The Chilean was hung out to dry on most of the goals, but probably could have done better on Leicester’s second. Ultimately Bravo’s shot-stopping is a major concern for a team with title aspirations.
Bacary Sagna: 4.5
The best defender City had on the day, and Sagna was still quite poor. He can still do a job at right-back, but playing center-back does not suit the elder Frenchman.
John Stones: 3.0
In the past, I’ve been the first to defend the young Englishman when he’s made mistakes. This game it wasn't just about one or even two mistakes, Stones was consistently making error after error and for the first time I felt uneasy every time he had the ball at his feet.
Aleksandar Kolarov: 2.5
Despite a goal, Aleks Kolarov's days as a defender on a title contender are coming to an end. Rumors are Pep has the green light to spend on a starting left-back in January and with Kolarov and Gaël Clichy’s recent performances, it’s easy to see why.
Pablo Zabaleta: 4.0
The Argentine needed to be stronger on Leicester’s second goal. Beside that mistake Zabaleta constantly misplaced or misjudged passes all night, maybe he isn't quite the revelation in the midfield after all.
There came a point watching the game that I lost count of the times I yelled, “for God sakes Fernando!”. Far too many errors from a player who should know better.
Jesus Navas: 3.0
This was one of the most JESUS NAVAS IS BAD!!!!! performances of recent memory. To say the Spaniard was lacking in offense is being historically nice.
Kevin De Bruyne: 3.5
The usually stellar Belgian was quite poor against Leicester. Poor runs and misplaced passes were just the order of the day for De Bruyne. Perhaps the rain actually did have an effect on City’s players.
Ilkay Gundogan: 4.0
The German was pretty invisible most of the night as well, there seems to be a theme running here. Gundogan was better dropping deeper and looking back, Pep Guardiola probably would have preferred Gundogan in a deeper role.
David Silva: 4.5
The Spaniard was probably the best of City’s attackers, though that isn't really saying much. Silva tried to create but on an evening nothing cold go right, nothing did for Silva either.
Kelechi Iheanacho: 3.0
I’ll be honest, I’m starting to run out of ways to describe how bad City players were. Kelechi was poor, his poorest game in a City shirt, enough said.
Yaya Touré: 5.5
Definitely added something that was missing from City’s midfield. Not sure if starting the Ivorian is the answer, but something has to change for the next game.
Raheem Sterling: 5.5
Sterling was surprisingly left on the bench, even though he was apparently fit. Perhaps this was Guardiola’s way of easing the Englishman back into the team, but City are better when he’s on the wing.
A good finish by Nolito flattered the scoreline slightly at the end. With Agüero out, Nolito needs to be considered for a starting role.