Pellegrini under increasing pressure following capitulation at Old Trafford
FA Premier League
Sunday 12 April 2015, 16.00 KO
City: Hart, Zabaleta, Kompany (c) (Mangala 46), Demichelis, Clichy, Fernandinho, Toure, Milner (Nasri 63), Navas (Lampard 74), Silva, Aguero
Unused: Caballero, Kolarov, Dzeko, Fernando
Goals: Aguero (8, 89)
Booked: Milner, Silva, Kompany
Referee: Mark Clattenberg
Man of the match: Fernandinho
Manuel Pellegrini endured yet another day to forget as Manchester City manager, as he saw his side easily beaten by neighbours United in the 169th Manchester derby. It was a torrid performance from the Premier League Champions, who completely collapsed after an initial bright start.
The Blues took the lead after just eight minutes, when a neat intricate move involving James Milner and David Silva was finished from close range by Sergio Aguero. The Argentine ended a personal drought that had lasted six games. United, however, responded strongly, and soon found themselves level when Ashley Young tapped home after a fortuitous rebound off Gael Clichy.
United, buoyed by the equaliser, sound found themselves on the front foot, with Fernandinho and Yaya Toure struggling to match United's energy in midfield. It came as no surprise when Marouane Fellaini headed the hosts in front, despite a suspicion of offside. City looked vulnerable defensively once again, a recurring theme this season. Matters weren't helped when Vincent Kompany had to withdraw through injury at half-time, although in truth City's captain was perhaps fortunate not to have seen red moments earlier for a wild lunge.
The second half went from bad to worse from a City perspective, as United capitalised on yet more poor defending and found themselves two goals ahead. There was a hint of offside once again as Juan Mata raced clear and finished through Joe Hart's legs. City by now had capitulated as Chris Smalling added a fourth, heading in Ashley Young's pinpoint freekick.
The Blues did manage to reduce arrears late on, with Sergio Aguero notching his one hundreth goal for the club, but it was scant consolation. City have now won just six of the seventeen games played in 2015, and the future of not only the manager, but several big name players, looks increasingly precarious.