By Ollie Irish
Oh dear, this Roberto Mancini experiment might be over before it’s begun. There are already rumblings that Mancini might not even make it to the end of the season as City boss. Such rumblings might be deemed ridiculous were it not for the fact that I could see it happening.
With this loss at Stoke, City’s last chance of winning silverware in 09-10 left town. And Mancini’s fragile reputation got knocked again.
Fair play to Stoke, they outlasted City and finished strongly. Dave Kitson opened the scoring in the 79th minute opener but Craig Bellamy equalised a couple of minutes later. Almost immediately after Bellamy’s goal, Emmanuel Adebayor was sent off for raising an arm at Ryan Shawcross – arguably a harsh decision – before Shawcross headed Stoke in front five minutes into extra time. Tuncay’s smart strike sealed the win and a quarter-final showdown with Chelsea. That will be physical.
If City don’t finish fourth now, Mancini could be on his way out.