Game 25 of the 2014/15
In years gone by this could have been considered a potential banana skin for City; but such are the resources at their disposal that most fans and pundits expected a comfortable victory despite Wednesday flying high in the Championship.
Pellegrini continued to respect the competition by naming a very strong side, with Toure as captain for the evening. However, the first half was extremely subdued from the home side’s perspective, as they were forced to tamely retain possession in their own half for long spells. Wednesday also saw a couple of half chances fall to Madine and May, with poor first touches on both occasions saving City. Mangala came closest for the citizens as he crashed a volley off the face of the post from a left wing corner.
Fortunately for a subdued Etihad crowd, there was an exciting clash at half time. A host of young fans from each side played on a pitch far too small, with the game resembling a swarm of bees around some honey. All this activity added to the drama, as Wednesday triumphed 2-1 with the last kick of the game.
The second half saw a more purposeful start from City. Wednesday could not press them as effectively due to the increased tempo and things went sour pretty quickly, with seven unanswered goals in 43 minutes. The red card for Maghoma was bit unnecessary and took the contest out of the game.
Although Wednesday were soundly thrashed in the end, their fans were exceptional throughout. It is normal for the underdog’s fans to be particularly vocal whilst their side are in the game, but to hear the boom of ‘high ho Sheffield Wednesday’ at 0-7 was very impressive.
So eventually the holders secured a safe passage through to the fourth round, with a home draw against Newcastle the next barrier as they aim to retain English football’s third trophy.
Entertainment = 6/10