Man City vs Newcastle: FW vs CB

On paper, the strikeforce of Manchester City is impressive to say the least. More than that though, on the pitch they are all performing and scoring goals at the moment which spells trouble for Newcastle.

Lucky for us we boast the meanest defence in the Premier League to date and in Fabricio Coloccini and Steven Taylor have the makings of a truly great partnership at the centre of defence.

Of course a lot could change in the next two weeks but chances are the following are the individual battles we will see on the day and my own take on how I see them going.

Aguero vs Taylor

Aguero is probably the one of the three sure to start. He is a class act and on his day is virtually unstoppable. In saying that I think coming up against Taylor and Coloccini he may still come in for a tough time of it.

His main weakness is aerial prowess. Lucky for him Man City are generally not a team for long ball tactics, but if they are pressured into it Aguero will not get much change off our defence.

Both Taylor and Coloccini are superior to him in the air and seem to have managed very well against any side that has pumped balls in at them to date. I think the danger lies more so with his pace, movement and technical ability.

In terms of pace, although Aguero is quick off the mark chances are he will drift to the left side more often than not. If that is the case Steven Taylor will be the one assigned to keeping him quiet and thankfully is no slouch either.

As well as that Taylor seems to read the game and anticipate opposition runs in behind very well these days which may stifle Aguero’s threat to an extent, certainly in terms of him trying to play on the shoulder of the last defender.

The only real concern for me is him dropping deep, but more so his fondness for drifting out to the left hand side, doubling up with David Silva and cutting in to the central position for a shot in or around the box.

The reason this worries me is Danny Simpson is just as fond of showing players inside. This could pose problems at times but that said I do think we are blessed to have Steven Taylor playing on that side of the centre of defence.

Nobody in our team is more willing to put their body on the line to block strikes from range. Aguero loves to cut in and take shots of that nature so hopefully Taylor is well aware and ready to deal with that potential threat.

All things considered, although Aguero is a top class player and it will be extremely difficult to keep him quiet for ninety minutes, I do think Steven Taylor is one of the most well equipped centre backs in the league to deal with him.

Who will win? Too hard to call for me. It will be one of the most interesting battles on the pitch.

Dzeko / Balotelli vs Coloccini

Hard to say who will play alongside Aguero. Both Balotelli and Dzeko are in fine form and are similar in style being tall, dominant players, posing more of an aerial threat than Aguero but more than comfortable with the ball at their feet too.

Whichever of the two it may be to start, chances are they will be faced with the prospect of getting the better of Fabrizio Coloccini who has been absolutely immense so far this season.

Admittedly there are certain aspects of the game in which either player could cause Coloccini some problems. Both could conceiviably get the better of him aerially but as I said before, that is not Man Citys style of play at all.

Pace-wise I think of the two Balotelli especially has the edge over Coloccini, but with Steven Taylor doing an immaculate job in covering the odd time he does get caught for pace, again it is not something I am too worried about.

That leaves movement and technical ability. This is where Coloccini wins out over both in my opinion. He is one of the most technically gifted centre backs in the league, unfazed by anyone trying to outsmart him with a trick.

Although both Dzeko and Balotelli are technically gifted players for big men, I really can`t see either making Coloccini look bad in this regard. In fact I think he could really frustrate them, especially Balotelli.

Coloccini winning this battle could be vital in the overall performance of the defence. Leading as he does, by example and instilling confidence in Steven Taylor, hopefully the full backs and men in front of him too.

Ideal scenario would be for him to face off against Balotelli. I think his temperament is questionable to say the least and Coloccini could really get to him, either throwing him and in turn City off their game, or even better getting him sent off.

Who will win? Coloccini for me. One of few man for man battles in which we have the better player.

Overall Assessment

Extremely hard one to call in my eyes. A lot closer than some people may think. As with most sides they face up against it will largely depend on the impact of their little Spanish maestro in midfield but if he can be kept quiet I think on their game Taylor and Coloccini could really stake their claim as one of the best defensive partnerships in the league going forward.

What do other people think? Have we the strength to keep out the highest scorers in the Premier League or are the defensive duo in for a tough day at the office?

28 thoughts on “Man City vs Newcastle: FW vs CB

  1. good read but i think the most important battle will be in the middle of the park , we need tiote and cabaye to battle it out and take some pressure off our defence, maybe pardew will play 1 up front and play maybe guthrie in with cabaye and tiote, but i can,t see him doing that as he,s not keen on changing a winning team so lets hope the 2 big guns in the middle of the park play out of their skin


  2. Stephen, if tiote, cabaye, best and ba play i don’t think we need the extra man in the middle, bothe best and ba a very good at dropping back and playing deep when they need to. If their work rate is at its highest then the mid-field shouldn’t suffer.

    Our problem may be scoring…. does anyone have ideas of how we may go on the attack (if we get a chance);)


  3. good points, but they will be a threat all over the park,having said that the way our lads are playing at the moment, with a never say die attitude, i think we are probably the only team that can give man city a game at the moment,teams arent going to beat them skill wise,but 90 mins of hard work and chasing everything,is the only way to do it,and at the present time no team does that better than us


  4. nobby,think our main chance of scoring is if we hold them for a while, and they become frustrated ,theres a chance they might lose shape and we can hit them on the break.heres hoping anyway


  5. Cheers for the comments lads. Agree the midfield will be the most important battle.,Another one on the way to cover that. Wanted to do a few articles on different battles rather than writing one epic people got bored of reading.


  6. Hope they don’t start with two up front. One would be a handful Two say Aguerro and Baliotelli would be too much for us


  7. My personal viewpoint of this game is that if we play to our best and they have an off day we could get a draw.

    They have class all over the pitch and the bench, and losing here isn’t a bad reflection on us.

    I’ve been surprised by every match this season, and I hope Pardew has a genius tactical plan up his sleeve like at Stoke.

    Strange things have already happened this season, but surely we can’t get a result in this one? I’m being a realist here, not trying to sound negative.

    Saying that, last season I thought we fully deserved a win and got beat, maybe we are due something from them.


  8. Think both Argentina’s coach and possibly capello will be watching the game. So if stephen and colo play well against the best strikers in the league at the moment (bar Rooney and Van Persie) they’re both likely to get international call-ups in the future. Will be a good game. Can’t believe it’s not on tv. “Shall we show the team that’s first with the best scoring record against the team that’s third with the best defensive record?”
    “No I think we’ll show the getting better Arsenal against a newly promoted team who are likely to either be extremely average or get relegated.” ❗ ❗ 😡


  9. Toby le Rhone
    I thought that they could change matches to suit how the league is doing?
    Shame I don’t have ESPN 😡 Thought Setanta was gone?


  10. Its not their striker I fear most to be honest. Look at a lot of their goals. They are set up on a plate for the strikers by David Silva and Yaya Toure etc. Them two worry me the most as they are hard to track


  11. I don’t fear any of them, I think they’re in a false position as they havn’t had a “real test” yet.
    We’ve played 6 teams who finished above us last year, they’ve only played 1 ffs 😉 😆


  12. You forgot an important factor in the Aguero/Taylor battle. Aguero is clever, very clever. So is Silva. Just one quick turn or bit of intelligent dual play and Taylor will be exposed. He is not that good at reading the game when proper football is being played right in front of him. Coloccini is. However, this is when Taylor is likely to panic as he knows he has messed up. The risk is a last ditch effort to make up for his mistake – resulting in a desparate lunge to make up space – resulting in penalties or missing the callenge all together…

    I dont want to put him down. I like the lad and he has done very well this season. There is no doubt Coloccini is rubbing off on him and he is maturing and beginning to become more composed, however a few times this season he has got lucky in exactly this type of scenario and we have not been punished. I fear Citeh will not be so forgiving. He will need to be on tip top form and fully concentrated for the entire 90.

    He is a good defender, but the gap between his ability and that of the Citeh forward line is rather large…

    Like somebody else pointed out, it will be down to our midfield to stop their forwards receiving the ball. That is the real battle.

    I think you are right about Colo though, he is capable of stremming their threat good and proper for sure 🙂


  13. Whatever team City put out will be too strong for Newcastle. City are scoring goals for fun and this will be the day Newcastle will lose their unbeaten run.
    Newcastle have done well so far but this will be the first time they will be really tested, 3-1 to City


  14. I am a geordie and nufc fan. but this match we will lose. we havnt got the firepower to beat man city. big transfers and big money will win this game unfortunatley for us.


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