Three talking points from Manchester City's 2-0 win over in-form Leicester
Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City arrived at the King Power Stadium on Saturday having won every match they have played since August. Leicester City, meanwhile, were on a good run themselves, going six unbeaten prior to the visit of the Citizens.
It was City that ran out winners in the end, although Claude Puel’s Leicester put up a strong fight, having a shot hit the post shortly before Kevin de Bruyne fired home the Blues’ second goal from a counter attack to seal the victory.
Guardiola’s side temporarily extended their lead at the top of the Premier League to nine points following the win, although that primacy was cut to eight after Manchester United beat Newcastle 4-1 at Old Trafford.
Below are three talking points from City’s win…
Another top class performance from Ederson
One of the main talking points this summer was the inflated transfer fees of many top players – PSG broke their transfer record to sign Neymar for nearly £200 million, whilst Kylian Mbappe joined for a future fee of £175 million.
In the Premier League, Romelu Lukaku joined Manchester United for £75 million from Everton, and City spent big themselves – £50 million on Kyle Walker their biggest outlay.
However, one of their most important deals has to be the signing of Ederson from Benfica for £35 million, a fee which could be called a bargain in today’s market.
The Brazilian kept his seventh clean sheet in yesterday’s win in what was another impressive performance.
He was signed to replace Claudio Bravo and provide Guardiola’s side with much more impetus when playing out from the back, as well as his ability to make top class saves.
Ederson demonstrated both those skills yesterday, impressing in the sweeper keeper role with his positioning ability, especially outside of his 18-yard box in intercepting long balls – one example came in the first half where he stopped Demarai Gray from potentially running clear – which in turn allowed City to press higher up.
One of City’s main problems last season was conceding goals, something which appears to have eased with the signing of the Brazilian.
Kompany decision a major talking point but promising signs for Puel’s side
Leicester may have lost 2-0 but they probably won’t be too disheartened.
City haven’t lost all season so a win for the Foxes was never realistically on the cards. Nonetheless, they definitely gave the Blues a game.
If referee Graham Scott had shown Vincent Kompany a red card for his early tackle on Jamie Vardy when the Leicester man was running through, the dynamics of the match could have changed completely.
As it stood, Kompany was shown a yellow, but Leicester still had chances after that despite City’s overall dominance.
Harry Maguire had a shot that hit the post shortly before City’s second, and Kompany almost diverted it into his own net following a Mahrez cross.
Leicester are currently only four points above the relegation zone, in 12th, but based on Saturday’s performance they should stay up comfortably.
Out of their next six games, they face four teams currently in the bottom half – the other two being Tottenham and Burnley – so if they pick up some wins out of those games, they could be looking towards challenging for the top half of the league.
Silva’s impressive season continues
The Spanish playmaker registered his 8th assist of the season in City’s win yesterday, cutting the ball back to de Bruyne for their match-clinching second goal just seconds after he had been on the line to cut out Maguire’s shot.
He also played a crucial part in City’s first goal, breaking through the Leicester defence and laying the ball across to Gabriel Jesus, who tapped into an empty net.
The form of the likes of de Bruyne, Leroy Sane and Sergio Aguero have been major talking points in City’s attacking development this season but Silva’s performances have been equally key.
The Spaniard does not score many but he plays a role that allows City’s front men to grab the goals instead. He adds an extra dimension to City’s play in terms of his passing and movement that would sorely be missed was he not to be playing.
Silva won City’s player of the season last year and has been one of Pep Guardiola’s most crucial players since he arrived at the club last summer. He has translated that form into this season and is still one of City’s most consistent and important performers.