During the break in the Manchester derby, the City Stadium director again tried to spread optimism. She recorded a collection of dramatic moments of happiness on the scoreboards. The goal that Paul Dickov helped the club get to the second (!) League in the 1999 playoff against Gillingham in injury time. Sergio Agüero's goal at the last minute of the 2012 Championships Vincent Kompany's goal from 25 meters earlier this year against Leicester City, which decided to win the title against Liverpool FC.
"We're fighting to the end," it said at the end of the edit.
This was the case with the Manchester United neighbor. In fact, Pep Guardiola's team eventually struggled to turn the deficit into two goals from the first half with goals from Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial. However, because the hosts only managed to get through Nicolás Otamendi and after the final sprint was the season's fourth defeat, the title match is likely to face the champions for the past two seasons. Liverpool are 14 points behind.
"It's normal not to win all cups"
Guardiola has no desire to constantly make assessments of the situation at the top of the table, the questions from transgaming.orgs reporters in this direction irritate him. When he said the race was over during the week following Burnley's 4-1 win, it was easy to uncover it as sarcasm. After the Derby defeat, it was already more difficult to classify his statements. "Sometimes the others are better and you lose. It's normal not to win all the cups," he said. Apparently the Catalonia coach realizes that Manchester City are England's second best team this season.
After two years in which his sky-blue passing machine showed what was perhaps the best football of the Premier League era, it emerges during Christmas 2019 that the high stage for this team is over. Manchester City is currently reminiscent of a fading star. Sometimes the light still flickers brightly, but gradually it fades. Sometimes Guardiola's team plays intoxicating and separates the opponent from one another, but defeats like 1-3 in Liverpool a month ago or 1-2 in the derby increase.
FC Bayern's former coach likes to protect his players after weaker performances. "I like the way my team played. We often came to the bottom third," he said after the game against United, reflecting on the many attacks his team had made. He was right in that. He could also have referred to bad luck in judging decisions. But that doesn't change the fact that this Manchester City is no longer Manchester City for the past two championship years.
Last chance: Champions League
The quick United strikers once again revealed the weaknesses of the defense of Guardiola's team in the first place, which was opened up only after the injury from Defense Chief Aymeric Laporte. As was often the case this season, the attacks lacked precision. The team no longer manages to tear holes in the opponent's defense through their ball circulation and use them for deadly steep passes. Instead, one after the other flew into United's penalty area. This is always an alarm signal for Guardiola teams.
Nevertheless, the coach can still crown his work in Manchester this season – by winning the Champions League. After two championships, the place on the throne of Europe would finally work. To that end, the Sheikh Mansour Club has put together a billion strong teams in recent years and has completely adjusted the coach's infrastructure. On the gala night of a journalists' association, Guardiola recently said that he and Jürgen Klopp of Liverpool Champions League winner could simply exchange trophies.
It was meant as a joke. But since the championship is only theoretically possible after the derby deficit, the European Cup should now take priority in Manchester City. It is not to be expected that the coach in the future will only offer other players in the league. Due to injuries to Leroy Sané, Sergio Agüero and Laporte, Guardiola has limited options for rotation anyway. In addition, constant changes will keep the team off the beat. Even more than it already is.
Manchester City 1-2 Manchester United (0-2)
0: 1 Rashford (23rd penalty)
0-2 Martial Arts (29.)
1: 2 Otamendi (85.)
city: Ederson – Walker, Stones (59th Otamendi), Fernandinho, Angelino – De Bruyne, Rodrigo (86th Gundogan), David Silva – Bernardo Silva (March 65th), Gabriel Jesus, Sterling
united: de Gea – Wan-Bissaka, Lindelöf, Maguire, Shaw (89th young) – McTominay, Fred – James, Lingard (89th Tuanzebe), Rashford – Martial (74th Pereira)
Yellow cards: Bernardo Silva, De Bruyne, Walker / de Gea, Pereira