Manchester City 1-0 Wolverhampton Wanderers: Adebayor’s Goal Just Enough To Hold Wolves

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Big-spending Manchester City collected the three points at a City of Manchester Stadium that was in carnival mood to greet the first appearance on home soil of the fruits of a busy and expensive summer of spending. There was also a pre-match buzz of expectancy that the signing of Everton centre-back Joleon Lescott would be announced before  too long.

However, when the action got underway, City, who dominated the first half, should have been out of sight before Wolves made life uncomfortable for them during the final 25 minutes, suggesting that Mark Hughes has much work to do yet on polishing his new creation.

Hughes handed Carlos Tevez his full debut, the Argentine replacing Craig Bellamy up front in the only change from the side that won at Blackburn last weekend. Wolves were unchanged from the team that beat Wigan Athletic in midweek.

Tevez already seems to be a hero at Eastlands, and his trademark enthusiasm had the fans roaring appreciatively as he twice forced Wolves goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey into urgent if not panicky clearances.

City’s lively start suggested a rough afternoon in store for Premier League new boys Wolves, but despite controlling the game with plenty of early possession they could not fashion a clear sight of goal until the 18th minute, when they went ahead with their first clear-cut opportunity. A left-wing cross from Wayne Bridge went all the way to Tevez on the right, and the Argentine’s sweetly cushioned pass set up Emmanuel Adebayor who, from a tight angle at the near post, claimed his second goal in two games for his new club.

However, City then became sloppy, overplaying the ball rather than going for the jugular. Shaun Wright-Phillips broke clear on the right and his low cross was played onto Adebayor by Stephen Ireland but the Togo striker shot straight at Hennessey.

Then Adebayor played in Robinho with a gem of a crossfield pass, but Robinho could only scuff his effort.

When Wolves finally created a chance, a curling effort from Matthew Jarvis 25 yards out was well-saved by Shay Given.

Just before the break, Tevez met a left-wing cross from Gareth Barry, but the header flashed narrowly wide of the far post with Hennessey beaten.

Ireland’s wasted one of several more good chances for City to increase their lead, shooting weakly and wide with the goal at his mercy.

Adebayor rounded Hennessey but could only shoot into the side-netting, before Robinho put the ball in the net but saw the strike ruled out for offside.

Wolves, heartened by City’s generosity, forced their way back into the game and Andy Keogh thumped the City crossbar. The hosts became steadily more nervous as Wolves gained heart, confidence and possession.

Keogh then nearly got on the end of a dangerous right-wing cross from Jarvis.

The visitors continued to exert pressure, to the obvious consternation of Hughes, whose side were simply hanging on at the end when it should have been far more comfortable. Still, City have played two, won two, scored two and conceded none.

Goal

~ by footballdirecta on August 22, 2009.

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