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Football News: Manchester City Premier League season so far

Manchester City Premier League season so far
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Results so far:
H v Sunderland 2-1
A v Stoke City 4-1
H v West Ham United 3-1
A v Manchester United 2-1
H v Bournemouth 4-0
A v Swansea City 3-1
A v Tottenham Hotspur 0-2

Standing top of the table, with 6 wins in 7 matches, you could be forgiven for thinking it has all been plain sailing for Manchester City's new 'messiah' Pep Guardiola. In reality, despite the good results, this season has been a much larger challenge than any Guardiola has faced before, and there have been very real signs of form dipping.

First off there is the ongoing public war of words with Yaya Toure and his agent, Dimitri Seluk. Seluk has not minced his words at all, as he constantly hits out at Pep via the media. With his client being frozen out of the side, Seluk has been busy making sure everyone knows that he disagrees with the decision and that his opinion of Guardiola is extremely low. That has just made it easier for Pep to sideline the big Ivorian though, as he now has an excuse, over and above Toure's poor play in recent years. However, the public spat is unseemly, it does nothing for City's image and it is not good for team spirit.

Then there was the goalkeeper saga, with Joe Hart being dropped, for being unable to distribute the ball effectively (though his regular clangers did not help his case), to be initially replaced by Willy Caballero and finally by the expensively-acquired Claudio Bravo. With Hart sent off to Torino, Pep has thrown all his eggs into the Bravo basket, only to see Bravo fumble it in his first few performances and smash a fair few of those eggs. It is going to take good man-management for Guardiola to rebuild an obviously shattered confidence.

Now there are signs the 'Pep-aura', built up by the media, has been diminished, first of all by allowing Celtic to tear them apart for an hour in the Champions League, before getting given a footballing lesson by Spurs the following weekend. Is Guardiola really the genius the media have made him out to be? Now is when we find out, as the players go away on international duty on the back of a couple of poor performances, with the prospect of a high flying Everton to come after the break.

Written by Tris Burke October 04 2016 10:36:40