Previous
Arsenal
Southampton
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Liverpool
Middlesbrough
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Real Madrid
Elche
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Bayern Munich
SC Paderborn 07
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Empoli
AC Milan
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Arsenal
Southampton
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Cardiff City
AFC Bournemouth
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Derby County
Reading
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Leyton Orient
Sheffield United
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Liverpool
Middlesbrough
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Milton Keynes Dons
Bradford City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Shrewsbury Town
Norwich City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Sunderland
Stoke City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Swansea City
Everton
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Fulham
Doncaster Rovers
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Real Madrid
Elche
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Celta Vigo
Deportivo La Coruña
8:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Bayern Munich
SC Paderborn 07
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Eintracht Frankfurt
Mainz
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
TSG Hoffenheim
SC Freiburg
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Werder Bremen
Schalke 04
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Empoli
AC Milan
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Stade de Reims
Marseille
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Stade Rennes
Toulouse
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Newport County
Swindon Town
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Aberdeen
Livingston
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Falkirk
Rangers
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Kilmarnock
St Johnstone
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Partick Thistle
St Mirren
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Ross County
Hibernian
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Clyde
Montrose
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Brescia
Lanciano
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Cittadella
Pro Vercelli
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Crotone
Catania
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Frosinone
US Avellino
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Livorno
Varese
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Modena
Perugia
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Ternana
Bologna
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Trapani
Virtus Entella
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
US Pescara
Latina
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Vicenza
Bari
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
FC Ingolstadt 04
FC Erzgebirge Aue
1
1
LIVE HT
Game Details
SpVgg Greuther Furth
VfR Aalen
0
1
LIVE HT
Game Details
St Pauli
TSV Eintracht Braunschweig
1
0
LIVE HT
Game Details
SV Sandhausen
TSV 1860 Munich
0
0
LIVE HT
Game Details
AC Ajaccio
Le Havre AC
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Angers
AJ Auxerre
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Arles
Stade Laval
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
AS Nancy Lorraine
Tours
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Dijon FCO
Créteil
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Nimes
Chateauroux
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Orléans
Ajaccio GFCO
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Sochaux
Brest
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Troyes
Niort
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Capelle
FC Volendam
3:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Rijnsburgse Boys
Sparta Rotterdam
3:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Scheveningen
Lisse
3:00 PM GMT
Game Details
VVSB
Vitesse Arnhem
3:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Spakenburg
NAC Breda
4:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Achilles '29
Twente Enschede
Postp
Game Details
Ajax Amateurs
NEC Nijmegen
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Almere City
ADO Den Haag
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Deltasport
Willem II Tilburg
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Exelsior Maassluis
FC Emmen
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Flevo Boys
DOS '37
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
HHC Hardenberg
RKC Waalwijk
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Kozakken Boys
Sportlust '46
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
ONS Sneek
Dordrecht '90
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
PSV Eindhoven
FC Utrecht
Postp
Game Details
VVV Venlo
FC Eindhoven
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Roda JC Kerkrade
Heerenveen
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Sporting Kansas City
Real Estelí
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Portland Timbers
Alpha United
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
César Vallejo
Universitario de Sucre
10:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 2
Game Details
Cerro Porteño
Independiente del Valle
12:15 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 0
Game Details
San Martín de San Juan
Argentinos Juniors
11:10 PM GMT
Game Details
Atlante
Mérida
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Correcaminos
At. San Luis
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Lobos BUAP
Oaxaca
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Mineros de Zacatecas
Dorados de Sinaloa
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Santos
Monterrey
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
U.A.N.L
Queretaro
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
UNAM
Toluca
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Veracruz
Chiapas
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
ABC
Goianiense
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Boa MG
Luverdense
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Bragantino
Icasa
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Joinville
América Mineiro
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Paraná Clube
Avaí
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Vila Nova-GO
AA Ponte Preta
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Ceará
América RN
12:50 AM GMT
Game Details
Portuguesa de Desportos
Náutico
12:50 AM GMT
Game Details
Sampaio Correa-MA
CR Vasco da Gama
12:50 AM GMT
Game Details
Santa Cruz FC
Oeste
12:50 AM GMT
Game Details
Vantforet Kofu
Vissel Kobe
2
0
FT
Game Details
Cerezo Osaka
Nagoya Grampus Eight
1
2
FT
Game Details
Kashiwa Reysol
Sagan Tosu
2
0
FT
Game Details
Rangers de Talca
Palestino
9:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Universidad de Concepción
Colo Colo
9:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Next
John Brewin profile picture Posted by John Brewin
Aug 26, 2014

Man City stability shows title gulf

The ESPN FC panel weigh in on Manchester City's 3-1 victory over Liverpool and share what both teams need to work on to find success this season.

If the mark of champions is to win while not playing at your best, then Manchester City are wholly capable of defending their Premier League crown. Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers had previewed his team's visit to Eastlands by saying that the encounter had come too early to have a bearing on the season's title race. Manuel Pellegrini had disagreed, and in trademark understated style, illustrated his belief in the importance of such a telling victory.

"I said in the press conference before that these games are games of six points," he said at his Monday postmatch news conference. "When you play at home it is important not to drop points against important teams. Liverpool is an important team and will be fighting for the title at the end."

Manchester CityManchester City
LiverpoolLiverpool
3
1
FT
Game Details

Pellegrini's favourite word is "important." City's 3-1 victory suggested a significant gulf between last season's champions and runners-up, a telling statement of intent. There had been almost nothing between the two when City's late surge won out the 2013-14 campaign but Monday's night's result was telling evidence that Liverpool might struggle to challenge without Luis Suarez.

They also struggled defensively, with new signings Alberto Moreno and Dejan Lovren suffering torrid evenings in the Manchester rain, though the most obvious narrative was the performance of City's strikers. Stevan Jovetic grabbed two goals to remind of his huge talent while Sergio Aguero's goal after just 23 seconds of participation exposed the Suarez conundrum once more. The Argentine was the only Premier League striker who could hold a candle to the Uruguayan, but while City have retained such a prized asset, Liverpool could not say no to Barcelona's 75 million pounds and looked much worse off for it.

"Kun is a very special player for us," Pellegrini said of Aguero on Monday.

"Luis is gone, he was brilliant for me for two years," said Rodgers, as he fielded question after question about new 16 million pound arrival Mario Balotelli, who won the rare distinction of being regaled in song by both sets of supporters as he and Adam Lallana sat in the Colin Bell Stand.

Stability was a leading reason for City bringing in Pellegrini to replace Roberto Mancini last year. The next stage in the club's development towards becoming a superpower is to defend their title, which only four clubs -- Manchester United, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Liverpool and Chelsea -- have achieved since 1955. Mancini's title defence saw him fall out with just about everyone at the club, including Balotelli, and thus Pellegrini was hired as the antithesis of the bellicose Italian. It is difficult to imagine Mancini being as stoic in the face of the restrictions that City's financial fair play penalties have made on transfer business.

Jovetic's rise after his injury-ravaged first season is timely, but Pellegrini would have you believe that this was all part of the plan. "I don't know if he is like a new signing," he said. "I repeat we need four strikers."

Contenders Crushed
Manuel Pellegrini has built arguably the strongest squad in the league.

Liverpool suffered for their lack of such strength in depth, which in itself suggested their achievement in going so close last season. With a Champions League campaign set to stretch Rodgers' resources where Europe provided no distraction in 2013-14, bringing in nine players was necessary, though the pain of transition was clear to see on Monday. They suffered for fielding half of a new defence, and City made hay on their left-hand side while Fernando, City's only new signing on view, showed clear mettle in midfield.

Alongside the signings of Eliaquim Mangala, Frank Lampard, Willy Caballero and Fernando, City have spent the summer tying up their established leading lights to long contracts. Vincent Kompany, Aleksandar Kolarov, David Silva, Edin Dzeko and Aguero are all at Eastlands to stay, as the club looks to build a dynasty with what they already bought in the six years since the Abu Dhabi takeover. All of the new deals are weighted towards bonuses rather than basic salaries, which may be a FFP-related machination, but retaining such a strong spine is a vital building block. Such is the playing power that City possess that they have maximum points from two matches while still wiping the sleep from their eyes.

"We need the whole squad," Pellegrini said. "In the first three weeks we play just one game a week. After the international break we play seven games in 20 days. It was very difficult to start the season and preseason so I am very happy with the games we won."

It leaves the rest either playing catch-up, or trying to live with City's powerful pace-setting. Chelsea are richer in options after their summer business, while Arsenal looked badly lacking of defense-minded players at Everton. Manchester United, despite the imminent addition of Angel Di Maria and possibly Arturo Vidal, are already looking as if this will be another season of change rather than success.

"You buy players, it doesn't guarantee you anything," Rodgers noted ruefully, his club having lavished 100 million pounds as he attempts a rapid rebuild. City, stars already established, guided by Pellegrini's steady hand, are guaranteed to be in the title hunt.

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.