Pat Nevin was in Etihad on Sunday and reveals how he saw his club get humiliated at the hands of City.
I must admit to being more tentative than I have ever been walking up towards the Etihad on Sunday. In fact I had been prepping my son for the entire week. I found myself saying, ‘You know, we might not win this one, so remember to stick by the team whatever happens’ and ‘Manchester City right now are one of the best teams ever to play in English football, so it might not go to plan this time’.
Without killing off the excitement of the build-up for him, I thought for once it might be worth resetting the expectations. Maybe I didn’t go far enough; I, he and the massed ranks of Chelsea fans around us were still shell-shocked by the end.
It is odd but I had never given him that ‘pep talk’ (maybe I should change that phrase to ‘reality check’) before a Chelsea match but this time something concerned me. Our away form had been suspect against the top sides and Manchester City were coming on to some fabulous form. City do not often get a team that plays them at their own passing game, in their own back yard, and for De Bruyne, Sterling, Aguero and company it was a rare opportunity for space and they took full advantage of it.
The down side of being brave enough to play an open, attack-minded, passing game is that when it comes up against the very best quality it can leave gaps. Chelsea unfortunately made mistakes and City were merciless.
SEE MORE: Real Madrid closing in on Hazard