Portland Timbers 0 Manchester City 3
Goals: Ireland 43, Adebayor 44 and Jo 69 for City.
City began pre-season with a 3-0 victory against a competitive Portland Timbers, who were given plenty of backing by an enthusiastic 5,000 sell-out crowd.
Ireland and Adebayor grabbed a goal each shortly before half-time. Both came courtesy of crosses by Adam Johnson. City changed everyone except Cunningham at half-time and managed a third courtesy of the inimatble Jo.
Few of us will have expected to see the Brazilian scoring again in City colours, but looking at the teams we put out in each half reveals the depth of talent available to Mancini.
With all our World Cup players yet to return, this is an excellent opportunity for the best of our Academy graduates.
“It was good for the young players to show what they could do.
“We used the defensive ones in the first half and the midfielders and strikers in the second half.”
Kieran Trippier enthused about the experience of training alongside the likes of Craig Bellamy.
“I’m learning the most from Craig Bellamy. He’s fast, he’s clever, he’s very experienced and there’s so much I can take from training with and against him.
“He’s always helping me, if I make a mistake he shows me what to do and he gets on my case like you might expect! But it’s all positive and you can’t help but pick things up from him.”
There’s a myth about Bellamy being a nightmare character off the pitch. The Welshman is passionate about the game and this isn’t the first time young players have talked about his willingness to help them. Adam Johnson referred to it after he joined City and Jack Collison cited Bellamy as a great help during their time at West Ham.
Mancini is known for giving young players a chance, and it will be interesting to see if any catch his eye during this tour of America. While most attention is focussed on our next big money signing, it could be one or two of our youngsters who earn a place in the first team squad for the upcoming season.
Javier Garrido, Michael Johnson and Shay Given were the players who didn’t get a run out. Johnson and Given are still getting back to full fitness, while Garrido has a torn calf muscle.
“It was good to see my good mate Joe Hart back in the squad and making one really good save.
“At least he remembered his gloves and that was more than he did for his first training session.”
Team: Hart, Trippier, Boyata, Mee, Cunningham, Ireland, Zabaleta, A Johnson, Vieira, Bellamy, Adebayor.
Second half – Taylor, Richards, Kompany, Lescott, Cunningham (Bridge), Tutte, Kay (Onuoha), Ibrahim, Helan, Guidetti (Nimely), Jo
- Portland Timbers site (set to appear on Sunday 18/7/2010)