Champions Man City Suffer Stunning Defeat at Norwich

By Daily Sports on September 14, 2019

Views: 916

Norwich City produced a magnificent all-round display to inflict Manchester City's first Premier League defeat since January at an ecstatic Carrow Road.

The Canaries were missing 11 players but made light of those injuries and took full advantage of a performance from the reigning champions that was careless in the extreme and characterised by chaotic defending.

Kenny McLean rose unmarked to meet Emiliano Buendia's corner after 18 minutes and Norwich doubled their advantage 10 minutes later when a flowing move started by Marco Stiepermann ended with Teemu Pukki setting up Todd Cantwell for a simple finish.

Sergio Aguero's header just before the break looked to have established the platform for a Manchester City comeback but a misunderstanding between John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi, which was typical of their displays, saw the Argentina centre-back robbed by Buendia for Pukki to score.

Rodri scored his first goal for Manchester City with two minutes left to make it a nerve-jangling ending before referee Kevin Friend's final whistle was the cue for wild celebrations and inflict a defeat that leaves Pep Guardiola's side five points adrift of Liverpool.

Laporte's absence exposes flaws

It was inevitable City would miss the class, composure and quality of Aymeric Laporte - who is set to be out for six months with a serious knee injury - but this display suggests the gap he leaves is even more ominous for Manchester City.

Guardiola has lost quality and influence with Laporte's injury as well as Vincent Kompany's departure and the nightmare came true at Carrow Road as Stones and Otamendi had a harrowing time.

City's manager will know he must now rely on the pair until January.

Guardiola himself should not escape criticism for the defeat after he left out Kevin de Bruyne then delayed his arrival until after Norwich had re-established their two-goal lead. They were mystifying decisions and a heavy price was paid.

The manner of Norwich's goals will also concern Guardiola, ranging from poor marking at set pieces - which is becoming a recurring theme - to catastrophic attempts to play out from the back.

Stones and Otamendi were riddled with nerves throughout, their lack of understanding reflected by the fact they had only played together as a centre-back pairing six times in the last 20 months.

It would be ludicrous to start writing off the title hopes of a team so rich in quality but that five-point gap to Liverpool looks large when you consider Jurgen Klopp's team only lost once in the league last season, to City, and have won their opening five games this term. (BBC)

•Photo shows Norwich striker Teemu Pukki after scoring against Man City on Saturday

Source News Express

Posted September 14, 2019


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