After Tottenham lost earlier in the afternoon to Southampton, it was up to Arsenal to beat Manchester City and close in on second but we couldn’t be bothered.
Manchester City were significantly brighter in the opening exchanges at the Etihad, applying pressure from the get-go and testing our defence. Sure enough, Sergio Aguero scored in the eighth minute, instantly putting us on the back foot. Amusingly, former Gunner Gael Clichy almost scored an own goal, seconds before Olivier Giroud got us back on level terms.
The Frenchman leaped several feet in the air, towering above everyone and heading home the equaliser less than two minutes after City’s opener.
The match then slowed down slightly, with City having the better of the chances but nothing as clear-cut as the opening minutes.
Unfortunately, Danny Welbeck went down with an injury midway through the first half and, despite trying to play on, limped off and went straight down the tunnel. If it’s the striker’s knee, which is looked to be, it’s a sad state of affairs as it appeared he’d be fit for the Euros and now that might not be the case. After 10 months on the sidelines already, hopefully this isn’t serious. It’s the opposite knee to the one that he had operated on, so is clearly a case of overcompensation.
Welbz was replaced by a newly fit Jack Wilshere.
Aguero continued to terrorise us for the rest of the first half, getting in dangerous positions, even forcing Petr Cech to come racing out of goal to clear the ball when Kos allowed him past a little too easily. Truth be told, Arsenal were lucky to go in at half-time on level terms; we barely got forward and all we appeared to do was slip around the pitch, despite gradually building up our possession percentage (story of our season).
The second half continued in similarly to the first with Fernando surging forward but shooting directly at Cech.
Just like the first half, City scored early on. This time through Kevin de Bruyne, who no one decided to close down. Instead, we allowed him to roll the shot along the floor and into the bottom left corner of the goal.
The team looked as if they didn’t really care about the result, as if the season was over already. It was uninspiring and frustrating to watch, just like about 75% of our matches during the second half of this season.
Walcott actually made a difference and managed to get in behind the City defence (namely Clichy) a couple of times. The first time his cross was intercepted, the second he scuffed his shot. However, a minute later, a beauty of an assist from Giroud played Alexis in who finished superbly. 2-2.
Neither team really appeared to want to get forward. City continued to have the better of the chances and play the superior football, but to little avail.
Another lacklustre, disappointing performance.