A 4-2 battering at the hands of United in the Manchester derby has really highlighted the problems in this ageing Manchester City team. No player epitomizes those problems any more than thirty-one-year-old central midfielder Yaya Toure who was a shadow of his former self.
A fast start by City was undone by some poor defending and a bit of luck regarding the offside flag for United but nonetheless after thirty minutes they found themselves a goal down. The response to going behind was embarrassing from a City point of view, they showed no character and the disinterest shown by the likes of Yaya Toure was simply unacceptable.
Toure continued what has been a poor season for him today with another disappointing performance in which his effort was minimum. Thus far in the Premier League Toure has 8 goals and a single assist, last season he finished with 20 goals and 9 assists. What a difference that is.
The second goal for United was a clear indicator that Yaya Toure just wasn't interested in the derby, after losing the ball in United’s half City’s players, notably Toure, laboured back after the ball and left plenty of space for United which they exploited. Toure has been a poster boy this season for overpaid players who go a hide when things get tough.
It is always a problem with teams trying to find the drive to go again after winning the season before, that ambition is hard to replicate as City have shown. It’s not only City, few teams can keep up such a high level of performance, Sir Alex Ferguson's Manchester United were the most recent example of a team who continually strive to be the best, they however had a few rare breeds in Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes et al who knew nothing but how to win.
The blame doesn’t rest solely with Toure for this poor season, other players such as Vincent Kompany have been well below par this season, even fan favourite Zabaleta has failed to recapture his once great form.
City now really do need a big summer revamp and fortunately for them they are not short of money to do that. One of the biggest changes may well be the manager with it looking increasingly unlikely Pellegrini will keep his job especially given the ruthlessness of the City owners. The main thing needed in this side is youth and maybe to say goodbye to the likes of Yaya Toure would benefit both the player and the club.