Carling Cup Highlights 29/11/11

November 30, 2011 - by mosesbet · Filed Under Sports News Comments Off on Carling Cup Highlights 29/11/11 

Arsenal 0 – 1 Manchester City

Manchester City beat Arsenal 1-0 last night to secure their place in the Carling Cup semi-final.

Aguero earned City their first win at Arsenal in over 36 years after Edin Dzeko, Adam Johnson and Aguero led a counter-attack from an Arsenal corner in the 83rd minute.

Arsenal, who made 10 changes from the team that drew at Fulham over the weekend, fielded a team of younger, inexperienced players, as has been their custom in the Carling Cup competition.

However, Wenger’s belief in his younger players paid off with the likes of Frimpong, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (18), Miquel and Coquelin all putting in impressive performances. 20 year old and French Under 21 midfielder Coquelin looked very comfortable in midfield, while £15 million signing Chamberlain looks like an England star for the future, if not the “wild card” in the upcoming 2012 World Cup.

Chamberlain was signed by Arsenal for £12 million (a fee which could rise to £15 million) from Southampton in the 2010/11 season.  Many critics were angry with Wenger for investing heavily in youth when Arsenal looked like they needed more experienced leaders and defenders in the squad.

However, Wenger’s investment in youthful talent looks guaranteed to pay off – Chamberlain was easily one of the best players on the pitch against City, he made a number of excellent passes, showed his technical ability on the ball and didn’t look at all phased by the importance of the game.  Chaberlain almost gave Arsenal the lead after 10 minutes after cutting inside Zabaleta and shooting from 25 yards out with his left foot.

Overall however, City’s depth and quality at the front of the pitch showed in the second half.  Big money signings Augero and Dzeko were far superior players to Arsenal’s front-men Park and Chamakh on the night, and a quick counter-attack from an Arsenal corner in the 83rd minute, along with naïve defending from Arsenal’s centre backs, was all that separated the two teams in the end.

Chelsea 0 – 2 Liverpool

Chesea manager Andres Villas-Boas is going to be under increasing pressure after suffering his 5th defeat in the last 8 games to Liverpool in the Carling Cup Quarter Final.

Goals from Maxi and Martin Kelly (his first senior goal for Liverpool) were enough to knock Chelsea out of the Carling Cup and put Chelsea under increasing pressure to spend in the Christmas transfer market.

The first goal that Liverpool scored on the 58th minute was almost exactly the same as the goal they scored against Chelsea in the 2-1 defeat at Stamford Bridge just a few weeks ago.  Chelsea’s high defensive line and lack of discipline at the back allowed Liverpool’s wide players such as Bellamy and Maxi to carve them open.  It’s honestly no surprise that players such as Suarez have been able to get through Chelsea’s defence so easily with so much space behind them.

In a previous article, I had backed Villas-Boas, since he is clearly a proven manager coming into a new club in a foreign country, with a team that is in transition. However, although he quieted critics with a 3-0 win over Wolves at the weekend, his naïve tactics and high defensive line are continually being found out by better teams.

Chelsea now have an extremely important match coming up against Valencia in the Champions League next week, which is a game which they must win.  If Chelsea fail to get through the knockout stages of their group (which they should do with all their experience and quality) then I think Roman Abramovitch will be starting his search for a managerial replacement.