Manchester City dealt Norwich a thorough hiding at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday, running out 7-0 winners in a match characterised by complete dominance from the hosts. The Citizens needed a fortuitous deflection off of Bradley Johnson to open their account on the day in the 20th minute but struck again just moments later and never looked back as they leapt back into the top five in the Premier League.
City lorded over the Canaries in seeing 64% of the possession, completing 90% of a mammoth 826 attempted passes as the visitors attempted just 385 of their own, completing 80%.
Norwich struggled to even get close to the opposition in defending, making only 11 tackles despite spending so much of the evening under sustained pressure, and were comprehensively beaten in the air in having won a pithy four of 19 total headed duels.
All told Manuel Pellegrini’s men created an astounding 17 chances, converting them at an incredible rate of course, piling on 13 take ons and scoring seven times on 26 shots as their adversaries barely had any success in all phases of the game.
Man of the Match – Yaya Toure
The Ivorian took Man of the Match honours for the third time this campaign, dominating in the centre of the park en route to a Squawka Performance Score of 128.
Toure didn’t need to do too much defending considering his side’s extreme territorial advantage throughout, but nonetheless made two tackles to aid in City’s oppression of Norwich’s offensive efforts.
Where the 30-year-old truly shone was in distribution, however, as he completed 93% of his passes to control proceedings from his role in midfield, creating two chances on top of his fantastic free-kick on the hour mark for the Citizens’ fifth goal.
Norwich somewhat surprisingly managed to keep the pace in terms of Performance Score through the first 5 minutes of the encounter, in fact leading 18-14 in this regard in the game’s formative stages.
Just prior to Johnson’s own goal on 16 minutes City were already far in the ascendancy at 52-6, and the gulf only widened more for the remainder of the match as Pellegrini’s men never allowed the Canaries even a moment’s respite.
Ultimately the Manchester outfit racked up a nearly incomprehensible Performance Score of 850 for their supremacy, dooming Norwich to a figure of -212 as they simply couldn’t contend with anything thrown at them past the opening five minutes.
Norwich barely were able to get out of their own end and looked hesitant in the tackle, allowing City too much space and time on the ball in only attempting to take the ball off their opponents’ feet 13 times.
The uncertainty of Chris Hughton’s men prompted them to commit 15 fouls in desperate, and rather futile, attempts to close the Citizens’ constant forays into the offensive third down, as the hosts’ quick passing and intelligent movement repeatedly unlocked a pack Canaries defence.
Manchester City’s heat map shows just how much time they spent in Norwich’s end, also highlighting the success they had in attacking down the flanks through Samir Nasri and David Silva, subjecting Martin Olsson and Russell Martin to a great deal of stress as they finished with Performance Scores of -32 and -40.
City’s quality was certainly the determining factor on the day, as was the Canaries lack of conviction and poor defending, as the home side comprehensively bullied the visitors out of the park to banish thoughts of their heartbreaking defeat to Chelsea last weekend.Published 03 Nov 2013, 01:20 IST