George Caveney draws breath after the International Breakdown...
Is it just me, or…
… has your average Man City fan’s off-season become more exciting than the rest of the footballing year?
I spent the summer feverishly trawling the internet and surreptitiously flicking through newspapers looking for who might be on the way to Eastlands, and who was bitchin’ an’ a screamin’ on the way out.
Listening to the pundits big-up the blue revolution while managers of the established order went shopping for more comfortable cushions, and gum that could endure their heightened ruminations. Or in the case of Ancelotti, just sticking his bottom lip out a bit further – which has worked wonders.
And then… back to business as usual. Maybe. Look, I’m not judging the season or being impatient, just saying how it feels so far. I mean, it’s pretty typical City, isn’t it?
A good draw with Spurs, a resounding result over Liverpool (not really Liverpool though, was it?) – followed by two albeit convincing performances, but poor results against the melting pot teams we’re supposed to be leaving behind. It’s just kind of… well… an anti-climax thus far. Maybe I’m just a bit flooded out with all the transfer window excitement, but I’m worried I’ve lost sight of what it’s actually about. Worried that others may feel the same…
And does anyone else feel the EPL’s gone a bit unpredictable, a bit sinister? Perhaps it’s the drugs, and the fact it’s windy outside, but I think the Premier League has become a self-governing, bile-spitting, autonomous entity that from now on will just whimsically knock all the clubs about like a psychotic polar bear – and no amount of spending, hype, reverse psychology, perceived consistency or fresh fish will change its whims or insanity. Yes, it’s the drugs, isn’t it. Ignore this paragraph.
I’ve said before that it’s far too soon to pin the tail on the season. I stick by that, and I hope Milner is right when he suggests the thick and fast fixture calendar will be the glue to this new Airfix kit.
I think in a month or so we’ll have a pretty good idea of how this one’s going to pan out. In which case now would be a good time to see how Given responds to being sidelined. Not because Hart’s done anything wrong, but because it’d be interesting to see if he’s switch-on-and-off-able, like the best supporting keepers are in a melee of very different games.
The key, though, is finding the formula and sticking with it. Consistency and stability are the only ingredients we’re short of now. We’ve already shown the flashes of brilliance, the teamwork and the kind of football that will lead us to enduring success.
It’s merely the uncertainty and the newborn legs that are holding us back, so the last thing we need is another cabinet reshuffle. Okay, so it may have worked(ish) last winter, but it might just tip many City faithful and me over the edge. We were pretty close already.
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