A remarkable draw with Sturrdige and Robinho setting up a dramatic equalizer sends City into the new year with some momentum. However, the clubs performance for most of the match was poor, and Mark Hughes tactics were exposed. Sam Allardyce had lots of success against City whilst managing Bolton and MarkHughes return trip to Ewood Park was always going to be a tough game to win. But City’s form away from home is about as poor as it gets, and the club finishes 2008 with the least points in the calender year for any club that played Premiership football in both 2007-08 and 2008-09, inspite of the draw.
Robinho was lively early drawing what should have been a penalty in the area early and then missing just wide on a header that was nicely set up by Felipe Caicedo. Stephen Ireland continued his good form today but the support was lacking. City must address its striker problems when the transfer window opens. Daniel Sturridge’s late goal and assist not withstanding the reported pursuit of Michael Owen could be a critical move for the club. More creativity in the midfield is critical as well in addition to more cover at the back.
The wily veteran Tugay heled control the flow of play for Blackburn and Benny McCarthy who has had success against City previously was on form tonight. Micah Richards had another poor outing bringing into question whether his form is suffecient to be included in Fabio Capello’s England squad going forward.
The tying goal was thing of beuaty with Robinho timing his run perfectly and Sturridge holding off two defenders and then finding Robinho at the back post to set up the equaliser. A draw is a nice result away from home especially when City was clearly outclassed much of the evening, but a serious upgrade is needed for the squad and for the first time in a long time, it seemed Hughes got his tactics wrong in a big match.
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