Post Match report for the Man City game - Saturday, 31st August 2019

PREMIER LEAGUE: Man City v Brighton 31/8/19 P4


VENUE: Etihad Stadium, Manchester - second away match of 4 fixtures.
RESULT: 4-0 . (h-t 2-0) . SHAPE: 5-4-1 . REF: anonymous in light of where he was to discharge duty.

PREAMBLE: at end of August Brighton fans travelled to the northwest with slight misgivings for forthcoming campaign realities diluted by late summer feelings of holiday hopefulness.
Expectation remained grounded in Prem experiences.
GATE: 54,386 . WEATHER: sun & showers.

GRAHAM POTTER made changes to his recent opening day away eleven, introducing pace up front in lieu of Gross, Murray and now borrowed Locadia.
Andone was banned, Duffy replaced but Webster & Bernardo elevated to start.

TEAM . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Ryan
. 22 Montoya, 15 Webster, 5 Dunk, 33 Burn, 30 Bernardo
. . . . . 11 Trossard, 6 Stephens, 24 Propper, 20 March
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 Maupay

BENCH: 27 Button, 4 Duffy, 16 Jahanbakhsh, 13 Gross (74), 18 Mooy, 17 Murray (67), 44 Connolly (67)

GOALS: 1-0 - 2. School-boy mistakes by visitors, wrong decisions, losing the ball, failing to pick up men etc, resulted in a simple close to goal tap in.
2-0 - 42. Excellent movement and application in a free-flowing attack gave locals a simple win by halftime.
3-0 - 55. Quality in build up, attacking prowess, superior attitude, skill and finishing saw the home unit go three up.
4-0 - 79. An Albion set piece was turned into a Citizens freeby goal-scoring opportunity and they took it to boot.

INCIDENTS: 35 - Webster carried the ball up field and met a late challenge. The protagonist was stretchered off.

YELLOWS: Dunk. Otherwise Albion could not get close enough to affect an illegal challenge.

SUBS: 67 - Bernardo & Maupay were withdrawn, while Murray & Connolly (on debut) got inserted up front. March dropped to wingback in lieu.
74 - Gross replaced Trossard, assumed to operate as linkman.

ANALYSIS: as on neutral ground in the FA Cup last springtime, Albion were caught cold from the get go and paid an expensive price for negative gain. Never was home advantage exploited so early or easily, with toiling travellers needing to score at least once thereafter just for parity, meanwhile still over ninety minutes remaining in which visitors needed to prevent further collateral domestic damage.
City did not have to go beyond basic boundaries to win but Albion were always flogging a dead horse from start of a very long tedious journey. Hosts were on a sky-blue high from 3pm, whereas dismayed away personnel got run ragged merely chasing the game. Seagulls were furiously flapping double-time to stay aloft by the break for oxygen.
Albion were dead & buried immediately after turnaround, consequently more significance became focused upon changes introduced from the bench rather than any post mortem. Pace from point had not produced chances converted, so a slo-mo version was substituted but to very little effect. Making things happen was beyond current visitors mentality.
This match will not define an evolving BHA season but Prem rookie Potter has learnt a lot more about upper echelons, his squad, himself and how it all has to fit for sustaining elite status quo.
The international break would allow time to reflect on strategy suitable to continually gather the necessary one point per game average for theoretical survival.
Nobody anticipated points here but the fail to score stat stood out predominately, compared to instant lack of a clean sheet.
MoM - Stephens, at least looked consistent.

NUMBERS: shape 433-541, poss 54%-46%, on target 6-2, off target 9-4, corners 8-1, fouls 10-6, yellows 0-0, subs 3-3.