Manchester City 0-2 Wolverhampton Wanderers: 5 talking points from the game
Manchester City welcomed Wolverhampton Wanderers at the Etihad on Sunday with Pep Guardiola’s side eight points behind league leaders Liverpool. The Cityzens had the chance to cut that gap to five points with a win against Wolves and it was clear that there were no other alternatives to all three points for Guardiola at the moment.
Liverpool’s perfect run in the league meant that the reigning champions have been playing catch up right from the start of the season. Guardiola’s boys, despite losing one and drawing one in the league prior to the game, had continued their blistering form from last term. Manchester City had already scored 27 goals from their seven games in the league; 14 of those had been scored in three games at home.
Wolves, on the other hand, were heading into the game with their season hanging in the balance. Nuno Espírito Santo’s team had managed just one win in the league and had already let in 11 goals. However, Wolves still had the ability to hurt their opponents with their counter-attacking style of play, something that Guardiola was wary of. The Spaniard named his first 11 accordingly.
Manchester City starting XI: Emerson; Kyle Walker, Fernandinho, Nicolas Otamendi, Joao Cancelo; Ilkay Gundogan, Rodrigo Hernandez, David Silva; Riyad Mahrez, Sergio Aguero, Raheem Sterling.
The Sky Blues started the game well but lacked precision in the final third, while Wolves threatened on the counter. The first half ended with the score 0-0. After the break, City continued to struggle in front of goal and was dealt with a telling blow when Wolves scored through Adama Traore in the 80th minute.
The Spaniard doubled the lead for the visitors in the fourth minute of injury time. The game ended 2-0 as Wolves picked up a memorable win. Here are the 5 talking points from the game.
#5 Guardiola gets his team selection wrong
Guardiola's team selection against Wolverhampton Wanderers perhaps had room for improvement. The Spaniard opted for Joao Cancelo in the left-back position, while both Oleksandr Zinchenko and Angelino were on the bench. The Portuguese failed to impress while Guardiola had to replace the injured Kyle Walker with Zinchenko in the second half.
The city midfield also lacked precision, as Rodrigo and Ilkay Gundogan lacked ambition and failed to win the midfield battle. Perhaps the use of two holding midfielders against a Wolves side who sat deep was not the best decision.