Man City’s risk-vs-reward style paying off for Guardiola

first_imgMANCHESTER, England (AP): Manchester City’s risk-versus-reward approach under Pep Guardiola was summed up in one passage of play during a Champions League match against Celtic. With two opponents closing in, City goalkeeper Claudio Bravo coolly slid a pass between them to midfielder Fernandinho on the edge of the area. Pressured by two more hounding Celtic players, Fernandinho produced a Cruyff turn to create space for himself and burst upfield. Just like that, Celtic was opened up and City was launching another attack. Guardiola acknowledges his possession-based style is fraught with danger but it’s been getting results, with City making its best-ever start to a season in winning 10 straight games and scoring 30 goals in the process. It sparked talk of City winning the Premier League at a canter. However, a 3-3 draw at Celtic on Wednesday that ended City’s winning run exposed potential fallibilities in Guardiola’s side. Bravely standing toe to toe with City, Celtic pressed high, hassled relentlessly and looked to outmuscle City’s ball-playing defenders. It worked, with City enduring an uncomfortable night at atmospheric Parkhead, especially at the back. Sitting deep against City and attempting to soak up pressure has got teams nowhere so far. Celtic have shown fellow sides the blueprint to trouble Guardiola’s side: Take them on. As it happens, Tottenham one of the best proponents of a high-energy, high-intensity pressing game are City’s next opponents in the standout match of the Premier League this weekend. It’s first versus second in the standings, a meeting between two unbeaten teams. Tottenham will know Bravo isn’t great under the high ball and takes risks with the ball at his feet. They’ll know the likely centre-back pairing of John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi can be brittle. And they’ll know the absence of injured playmaker Kevin De Bruyne takes some creativity out of City’s side. Tottenham beat City home and away last season, but it will be a huge task to stop the new-look City juggernaut. Guardiola has got City operating at previously unseen levels. The team’s biggest problem under his predecessor as manager, Manuel Pellegrini, was its work rate. But under Guardiola, City is second behind Liverpool in the “distance covered” category, according to sports data company Opta. Dropping Yaya Toure has helped City in this regard. Guardiola is getting the best out of winger Raheem Sterling, who was a disappointment last season after signing for $76 million, by giving him self-belief and playing to his strengths by getting him one on one with defenders as much as possible. He has five goals already. Likewise, Aleksandar Kolarov is looking like a different player under Guardiola, who has even turned the Serbia left back into a ball-playing centre back with mixed results. Playmaker David Silva looks liberated now that he is playing more centrally. Then there’s Sergio Aguero, a scorer of 11 goals in seven games this season. Guardiola is still asking for more from the striker, saying he has to work harder when City isn’t in possession to help the team. That sums up Guardiola’s demanding approach. As does his removal from the first team of goalkeeper Joe Hart and Toure, who were mainstays for the past six years. They didn’t fit his philosophy Hart for his poor footwork and Toure for his lack of intensity in midfield so they’ve been banished. “I want to have control,” Guardiola said after City beat Manchester United 2-1 this month. He was talking about his ball-possession, but he could so easily have been referring to his grip on the squad. WALCOTT’S REVIVAL Theo Walcott’s future at Arsenal looked bleak after a disappointing last season when he was mostly used off the bench and lost his place in the England squad. Now it appears he’s back to his best. Walcott has started all of Arsenal’s league games, and has scored four goals in his last three games ahead of Sunday’s match at Burnley. The pacey winger credits his improved form to a chat he had with manager Arsene Wenger during the off season. “I want it more than anyone else,” Walcott said. Arsenal is unbeaten in eight games since losing to Liverpool on the opening weekend.last_img read more

How Torontos film and TV production has surged past 2 billion

first_img Login/Register With: He also has a lot to crow about: Not only is Pinewood the site of the most anticipated television show currently being filmed, sources told the Star it will also be the site of the first big Toronto blockbuster film produced in 2017: Fantastic Voyage, from the titanic team-up of Guillermo del Toro and James Cameron.It is a remarkable coup, considering that not too many years ago a high Canadian dollar and a mortgage-related global financial collapse had all seemingly conspired to put the brakes on the Toronto film industry. And the studio, owned by developer Romano, film mogul Paul Bronfman, pension fund investor ROI Capital, and the city of Toronto was seen as the most visible white elephant. Alfredo Romano’s spacious second-floor office in Toronto’s Port Lands overlooks a science fiction fan’s lust-worthy fantasy: The set of the new Star Trek: Discovery television series.“This is pretty cool, right?” says Romano, taking a peek outside his window at a film production crew loading sets onto the mammoth 46,000-square-foot sound stage, the largest such purpose-built facility in North America.Romano, tall, gregarious and given to thoughtful, winding answers, is a former academic turned developer who studied religion and philosophy at Harvard. He is a shareholder in Toronto’s Pinewood Studios and his family is the largest private sector stakeholder in the Toronto waterfront area. LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement In 2008, when Pinewood first opened, production in the city descended to an ominous low of $499 million. Contrast that to 2016 where film and television production soared to a remarkable $2.01 billion. It is the third record-setting year in a row, up from $1.5 billion in 2015. And this year, based on interviews with producers, studio owners, unions and the city, that figure is on track to be eclipsed.center_img Twitter Facebook Advertisement Advertisementlast_img read more

Another Aboriginal man shot dead by Edmonton cops

first_imgAPTN National NewsAnother Aboriginal man has been shot and killed by an Edmonton police officer.This is the second shooting by police in the city in a little over a month.APTN National News reporter Noemi LoPinto has this story.last_img