Friday, February 27, 2009

City 2 FC Copenhagen 1

An impressive victory for me. Despite the overall lack of quality from our opponents, I thought we showed the patience and savvy required to ensure progression was achieved and it provided further evidence of the recent good progress being made.

Whilst the scoreline was at 0-0 there was always the threat of being caught cold, but in the first half we controlled the game well, dominated possession and created a number of chances that on another day could have seen us go in at half time with a two or three goal lead.

One criticism from the first half was the over reliance on long diagonal balls to both Bellamy and Robinho - thankfully rained in during the second half, where there was far more quick, short passing moves that provided some wonderful football as we pressed for the goal that would settle nerves.

Robinho was guilty of a couple of bad misses before Craig Bellamy eased us into the next round with a well timed brace, capping what was a fantastic performance from him. Full of industry and enterprise, he has also added goals (one thing I was sceptical of when he signed) and he truly has looked a fantastic addition to the side.

Putting aside reports of spats with Robinho, I thought the front pair linked together well, with Robinho perhaps too wide on occasion, but their attacking presence aligned with Ireland and Wright-Phillips was there to see. It is worth noting Robinho's contribution, marrying both 'graft' and the quality touches and decisions which were a joy to see.

Defensively I thought we were sound and stuck to our task well. The concentration levels were there (injury time excepted) and I was impressed with Shay Given's command of the back four. Like Bellamy, an impressive addition.

Through to the last sixteen now - something not achieved for some time - and whilst Aalborg will be a step up in quality from the Danish opponents we have faced this season, there is a definite sense that some momentum is building in our season which will auger well as we bid to to win the competition.

vote it up!

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