When it seems things can’t get worse for Manchester City in the Women’s Super League, they actually do. The women’s team was beaten black and blue by Chelsea on Sunday, falling to a 4-0 whitewash at the Academy Stadium.
For a team that was expected to challenge for the league title this season, it is surprising how the performances have been so poor. From league football to the Champions League and the FA Cup, it has been the same story.
Although the team has had an unfair share of injuries, the job of a manager is to find solutions at such times. He needs to come up with a way to overcome the challenges posed by injuries to some of his key players.
Injuries are not a good enough excuse for a team’s poor performance, especially when that continues for a long stretch. So the team’s continuous fall down the pecking order cannot simply be explained away as a consequence of injuries.
After surprisingly losing to the Real Madrid in the Champions league back in September and getting dumped out of the competition, the team were recently dumped out of the FA Cup by Chelsea. A 3-0 defeat showed there was no fight.
Poor results have ensured that the team stands no chance of competing for the Women’s Super League title this season.
Unfortunately, the manager seems to have no clue on how to turn things around at the moment. The team is closer to the bottom of the league table than to the top. In fact, if nothing is done to rectify the situation in the near future the team could find itself failing to even qualify for next season’s Champions League.
After several steps forward under former manager Nick Cushing, Manchester City had become a contender for the league title every season. But it seems like the team has been moving backward since current manager Gareth Tailor took over.
For the last two seasons the Blues have come close to the title but has not been good enough. The team finished second last season thanks to Arsenal's struggles. But the Gunners have been on fire this season and top the league table. They are closely followed by Chelsea who aim to retain the league title.
Despite making several signings to boost the squad in the summer, City have just not been able to compete against these two teams. In fact, even other teams like, Brighton, Tottenham and Aston Villa are ahead of City at the moment. The Blues are third from the bottom of the league table.
Sunday’s 4-0 drubbing by Chelsea at the Academy Stadium does not show any sign that the team will improve any time soon. It’s been the story of the season. The team lost 5-0 to Arsenal when the two sides met in September. Unable to compete with the top dogs that only means one thing: the title is out of reach.
Worse still, smaller sides are now beating City with regularity. The team has also lost to Tottenham and West Ham. At this rate, the future is not looking good.
Something has got to give.
For a manager who made it clear at the beginning of the season that the competition in the WSL is so brutal that back-to-back losses could spell disaster as far as competing for the title is concerned, City have won only one of their last six games losing four and drawing one.
With three back-to-back league losses in that run, the team has reached a new low. That is not a performance befitting of a team that has had so much investment in the squad. To move forward, it does seem like the manager will have to give way.
The club hierarchy will need to do the necessary now to prevent a further deterioration of the situation. Arsenal’s performance this season is a clear example of how much the team can benefit from a change at the helm.
Joe Montemurro achieved remarkable feats with the team before City and Chelsea became huge threats. After failing to challenge for the title last term, the manager was relieved of his duties. The result of the change is that under new manager Jonas Eidevall, the team is back at the top of the league table.
Is it time for City to do the same?