Player ratings: Blackburn Rovers v Manchester City

Hart – Dealt excellently with long balls into the box and raged at the defence whenever they threatened to switch off. Deserved the clean sheet. 7

Zabaleta – Not always at his best going forward and rarely tested defensively. If there’s such a thing as a forward’s tackle, then Pablo was guilty of a defender’s dive. 6

Kompany – An easier night than he had in Munich. Yakubu lacked the service to cause the captain any significant problems. 6

Lescott – Good to see him back. Any physical threat from Blackburn was easily dealt with by Joleon. 6

Kolarov – In a first-half when we lacked incisiveness, Aleks was the one playing attacking passes. Practically played on the wing at times as we sought to stretch the Rovers defence. 7

Y Toure – Not at his most dynamic, however his range of passing kept our possession ticking over and kept Blackburn on the backfoot. 6

Milner – While the passing was inconsistent, the workrate was constant. James’ movement and covering complemented Yaya in the middle. 7

A Johnson (Savic 84) – Wasn’t having a great deal of success and maybe wasn’t fully over an ankle injury. Then everything was forgotten with a superb replica of his goal at Sunderland. 6

Aguero (Nasri 27) – Didn’t have a huge impact before departing with a groin strain. Looks as though a couple of weeks off might do Sergio some good after a hectic start to his City career. 6

Silva – Heavily involved, though not everything came off as a long run of games took the edge off David’s game. He may believe he should be in Spain’s starting line-up, but a fortnight without a game would probably be best for City. 7

Balotelli (Dzeko 88) – Started out wide and wasn’t having a great impact. All change when he moved into the middle and started getting shots away. That cutting edge gave the sense we were going to score eventually, and so it proved. 8


Nasri – Lauren Blanc’s criticism of Nasri as a player who can slow down attacks often appears justified. Yet when he steps up a gear, as he did in the second half, Samir becomes a real threat as the cross for the second goal demonstrated. 7

Savic – Still being eased in by Mancini and still looking good. Fine header for his first City goal. 7

Dzeko – Presumably brought on to show he’s forgiven.

Man of the match: Mario Balotelli.

Champions League verdict: Bayern Munich 2 Manchester City 0
Verdict: Blackburn Rovers 0 Manchester City 4

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