MAN CITY 1 – 1 Juventus – One Point Gained Or Two Lost?

1 Oct

An interesting, if not pulsating, affair between Man City and Juventus ended all square after an early goal from Vincenzo Iaquinta was cancelled out by an Adam Johnson equaliser. Following a stunning victory over Chelsea, confidence would have been high in the City camp, but our Italian counterparts impressed at the start, and it required a certain amount of diligence and perseverance from the Blues to take a share of the spoils.

On the balance of play, I feel a point is a fair result, as despite City’s extra possession in the second half and the way in which we controlled the play, no clear-cut chances were created and Juventus nearly scored the winner themselves in the dying moments when their experienced captain Alessandro Del Piero smashed a free-kick against the crossbar. City drop from first into second position in the group after a comfortable 2-0 home win for Lech Poznan against FC Salzburg moved them into top place. City play hosts to, and then travel to play, the Polish champions in the next round of matches, and were they to win both of those game, they would be guaranteed a place in the next round.

Roberto Mancini

Roberto Mancini opted to make a number of changes to the side that defeated Chelsea at the weekend. Nigel de Jong, James Milner and David Silva were all rested, with their places taken by Patrick Vieira, Adam Johnson and Emmanuel Adebayor. Exciting German talent Jerome Boateng had sufficiently recovered from injury to make his much-awaited debut in place of Dedryck Boyata. The manager clearly had Sunday’s Premier League match against Newcastle uppermost in his mind, but the side he selected was still a strong one.

                                                      Hart

Boateng              K. Touré               Kompany                  Zabaleta

              Y. Touré                   Vieira                     Barry

                                              A. Johnson

                                  Tévez                  Adebayor

Subs: Given, Boyata, Lescott, De Jong, Silva, Milner, Jo

 

Vieira vows to impress

After a fairly sedate start, Vincenzo Iaquinta stunned the home supporters with a sweetly-struck, long range swerving effort that deflected off Kolo Touré and squirmed under the body of Joe Hart to hand the visitors an early lead. Juventus were the more impressive team, moving the ball around at a good tempo and looking good value for their lead.

But led by our irrespresible captain, Carlos Tévez, City started to claw their way back into the fixture, as we began to compete for possession and gain a foothold in the game. Yaya Touré was controlling the game, passing the ball at a leisurely pace, whilst Adam Johnson was looking lively on the right wing, cutting inside, as is his wont. He was linking well with Boateng, who was displaying his attacking prowess with regularity.

 

Vincenzo Iaquinta - City-Juventus (Getty Images)

And it was the afore-mentioned Johnson who levelled the scores towards the end of the first half, courtesy of a deft finish following a sumptuous through ball from Yaya. City were now really pushing on the accelerator, and the crowd were urging on their beloved Blues with an ever increasing cacophony of noise. Half time came and went, and City continued where they left off, racing forward and carving out chance after chance. Manu Adebayor, recalled after impressing during training this week,  was working harder than in recent times, but his first touch was crucially lacking.

After a raft of substitutions, the tempo of the game understandably dropped but City’s intent, if not final pass, was clear to see. The Blues pressed forward with optimism, but just lacked that creative spark, despite the introduction of David Silva. And the Blues were lucky to escape with a point after a stunning Alessandro Del Piero free-kick rattled Hart’s crossbar before bouncing down onto the line and away. The referee blew the final whistle and both sides can take heart from the point here.

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