Sport

Mancini fires, unlike his lacklustre Manchester City team

TO COIN a phrase from Shakespeare... all is not well in the state of Manchester - the blue half anyway.

Run-ins with referees, cameramen, the media and even his own players this week have shown the pressure is finally beginning to tell for Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini.

Firstly the usually unflappable Italian hit out at the press for reports he was on his way to coach Monaco if Sergio Aguero had not bobbed up on that remarkable final day of last season to hand City its first league title for 44 years.

Then he appeared to have a pitchside run-in - and there's no surprise about this - with the volatile Mario Balotelli.

Mancini wasn't done there. He faced the wrath of UEFA when marching on to the pitch to remonstrate with officials over a goal being ruled out against Ajax which would have kept City's slim Champions League aspirations alive.

He then took his frustration out on a cameraman who invaded his space.

The City boss is under pressure. But he needs to have a good, hard look inside his own camp before firing off against all-comers.

His team has not fired in the English Premier League this season, despite scratching out results and staying unbeaten.

And in the Champions League, City has been nothing short of terrible, especially in defence as the two goals against Ajax this week proved.

But still Mancini is loathe to take a potshot at the likes of Vincent Kompany and Joleon Lescott - publicly at least - yet he fires off at easy targets such as Balotelli almost after every game - or so it seems.

The City manager is not the only one under pressure in the coaching ranks.

Southampton's Nigel Adkins is felling the pinch, while at QPR and Reading, Mark Hughes and Brian McDermott are still searching for their first league wins of the season.

And spare a thought for Ian Crook at Sydney FC, who had to not only watch his team put in an abject display against the Central Coast Mariners last week, but also got into a public spat with Fox Sports expert Mark Bosnich after the former Manchester United goalkeeper suggested Crook's players did not try in parts of the 7-2 defeat.

The difference between those coaches/managers is the way they have reacted to adversity.

Crook, in particular, has defended his team and also apologised to fans for a shocking showing last week.

He must be feeling the pressure too, but seems to be handling it better than his Italian counterpart at City.

Only time will tell how long that lasts.

Topics:  manchester



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