Jul 14, 2013 at 2pm UK at ​Lucas Moripe Stadium
SupersportSupersport United
2-0
Man CityManchester City
Niang (56'), Erasmus (82')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Live Commentary: Supersport United 2-0 Manchester City - as it happened

Malaga coach Manuel Pellegrini gestures during his side's Champions League match against Borussia Dortmund on April 3, 2013
© AP Photos
Relive Sports Mole's coverage of Manchester City's opening pre-season game against Supersport United in South Africa.

Manchester City lost the opening game of the Manuel Pellegrini era, going down 2-0 to Supersport United in South Africa.

City gave a debut to new signing Fernandinho, but rarely threatened after the first fifteen minutes.

They fielded a completely different 11 in the second half, and conceded twice in the second 45 as they struggled to deal with their opponent's speed and creativity on the counter attack.

Pellegrini was able to look at a number of the club's exciting youngsters, which would have been helpful despite the result.

See how the action unfolded with Sports Mole's live text coverage below.


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1.01pmHello and welcome to Sports Mole's live coverage of the pre-season friendly match between Supersport United and Manchester City. It promises to be an intriguing encounter, so stay tuned for all the action live here on this page.

1.02pmI am not sure about you, but I'm quite intrigued to see how Manchester City fair in their first game under Manuel Pellegrini. Manchester United suffered defeat in David Moyes' opening match yesterday and City will be hoping that the same fate doesn't befall them.

1.04pmWill we get the exciting football that Pellegrini has promised the City fans? Will Jesus Navas and Fernandinho start? Will City find the goals that they lacked during the league last season?

1.05pmAll these questions will be answered over the next couple of hours, with the match kicking off in 55 minutes.

1.07pmLet's not forget that Supersport United also have a new coach today. Cavin Johnson guided the Platinum Stars to a surprise second place in last season's South African Premier League before taking this job.

1.09pmSupersport themselves finished sixth last season, but have a plethora of new signings to unleash on City today. Bennett Chenene and David Mathebula are both likely to make their debuts, as is Senegalese striker Mame Niang. The South African side will be without star winger Thuso Phala, though; he is out injured.

1.12pmThis afternoon's game marks the first of the Nelson Mandela football invitational. Both sides will be able to make up to nine substitutions and all funds generated will go to ten schools in Mandela's home town of Qunu. City will play their next match against AmaZulu in Durban on Thursday.

1.15pmWe've got some early team news from Manchester City...

1.16pmMANCHESTER CITY STARTING XI: Hart; Richards, Kompany, Garcia, Kolarov; Barry, Fernandinho; Razak, Suarez, Nasri; Dzeko

1.19pmSo, new boy Fernandinho does start in midfield alongside Gareth Barry. There's also starts for Micah Richards, Denis Suarez and Abdul Razak.

1.20pmIt's also interesting to note that Javi Garcia starts in central defence.

1.22pmOne player I am excited to see today is Denis Suarez. I watched him for City in the League Cup a couple of years ago but I haven't seen much of him since. He was excellent that day, every bit as silky and inventive as David Silva has been for City.

1.23pmIf Pellegrini can get the best out of Samir Nasri, then he will have another excellent midfielder to utilise. The former Arsenal man showed flashes of brilliance last season but hasn't re-created his Emirates Stadium form for City, and that needs to change.

1.26pmThe Supersport United team will follow in due course.

1.32pmA couple of other things regarding the City lineup. Pellegrini has gone with Dzeko in attack, despite the fact that the Bosnian has been linked with a move away from the club. The manager has said that he wants him to stay and this show of faith could help him to commit to the club again.

1.34pmThe other thing, is that Razak starts alongside Suarez. Both were used very sparingly by previous boss Roberto Mancini so could this be a move towards brining through more youth players from the new man in charge.

1.36pmAnd we do now have the Supersport team...

1.38pmSUPERSPORT UNITED STARTING XI: Williams; Moloi, Fransman, Borman, Medledle; Gyimah, Doutie, Maluleka, Nyondo; Mathebula, Chenene

1.39pmThe South Africans start with two new signings in attack but there is no place in the starting 11 for fellow arrival Mame Niang.

1.42pmThe City players are going through their final pre-match warm-ups now, while their manager does an interview on the pitch. Pellegrini looks relaxed ahead of his debut in charge.

1.47pmFormer Manchester United striker Andy Cole's son, Devante, is among the City subs today.

1.53pmNot long to go now until kick off. I'm sure both sides will be focussed more on their organisation and fitness rather than winning today, but as it is a friendly, I'm hoping for a few goals.

1.57pmThe players are going through the handshakes as the crowd, aided by a choir, sing happy birthday to Nelson Mandela.

0 minKICKOFF: Supersport get the match underway...

2 minEarly chance for City as the hosts play a poor pass out of defence. Suarez intercepts the ball and chips it to Dzeko but his header is weak.

3 minAnother poor clearance from Williams in the Supersport goal allows Dzeko another sight at goal. This time he powerfully hits the target from a tight angle, but Williams atones for his error and pushes it away.

4 minSupersport get their first chance of the game as a long pass breaks for Chenene on the left of the area. The striker cleverly cuts inside Kompany but can't hit the target as the onrushing Hart puts him off.

6 minBorman loses out in midfield, allowing Nasri to break forward and play a good ball into the path of Kolarov on the left, but his cross is cut out and Supersport clear.

9 minAfter a flurry of early chances the game has settled down a bit. It won't be long before we get some more goalmouth action though, with Supersport very keen to play the ball short from the back and often making mistakes.

12 minSupersport try to break forward but Borman's ball over the top has too much on it and City win the goal kick. Hart plays it wide to the right and Richards is warned after a 50-50 challenge with Medledle.

14 minKolarov loses out in defence this time and Chenene plays it inside to Borman, who shoots from long range instead of passing but his effort goes well wide.

17 minCHANCE! Kolarov comes in off the left and plays a one-two with Dzeko, bursting into the penalty area but scooping his effort just wide as he loses his balance.

18 minGreat turn by Chenene on the left, losing Micah Richards and crossing into the box. His delivery is deflected for a corner, but after a short corner, Maluleka is caught offside.

20 minSAVE! Great play from City as Kolarov plays the ball inside to Nasri who cleverly flicks it towards Dzeko first time, but the Bosnian's toe poke at goal is saved, as is the rebound. Supersport clear the resulting corner.

22 minGreat counter-attack from Supersport as Borman releases Chenene. The flag stays down and the striker makes his way into the box on the right. He fires it towards the middle and the ball beats Hart but is headed away expertly by Kompany.

23 minAnother counter-attack similar to the last one, with Supersport getting behind Kolarov on the left. This time there is no defender but Hart beats Nyondo to the ball in the box.

27 minThe pace of the game drops slightly again with neither side able to find their strikers in space in the last couple minutes. City in control of possession though.

29 minCity keep possession in midfield with Nasri and Suarez pulling the strings. The Spaniard goes back to Kompany but the City skipper's long pass goes straight out of play on the left.

32 minSupersport again break the offside trap as Chenene runs clear of Richards. The City man gets back but the home side are awarded a free-kick as Chenene goes down. Mathebula takes the free-kick on the edge of the box but curls it just over.

33 minSUBSTITUTION: Supersport make a couple of changes. Rondwen Fernandez replaces Williams in goal and Mame Niang comes on for Nyondo.

36 minCity break on the left as Nasri finds Kolarov, who receives a tough challenge from Moloi, but a fair one and Supersport win the throw. They then break on the right with Doutie but Mathebula is beaten to the ball in the penalty area.

39 minFernandinho breaks on the right after Richards wins a 50-50 but after beating his man with some nice skill, the Brazilian's cross is wasted and goes out for a goal kick.

41 minExcellent counter attack by Supersport as Borman breaks through the middle and flicks it wide to Doutie, who in acres of space but somehow Kompany gets back and makes a fantastic challenge. The City captain is up straight away to head Moloi's cross out of the danger area. Excellent defending from Kompany!

43 minAgain the home side break City's offside trap but this time Hart beats Chenene to the ball and smashes it out for a throw-in.

45+1 minGarcia heads just wide after a Nasri free-kick on the right. The goalkeeper is always comfortable and it seems that the sides will go in level.

45+3 minHALF TIME: Manchester City 0-0 Supersport United

2.50pmDespite the lack of goals that was an enjoyable half, perhaps more for the pre-season rustiness rather than quality and skill.

2.51pmSuarez and Nasri have showed flashes of quality, and Supersport have been bright and inventive on the counter-attack, but the lack of goals has been a slight disappointment.

2.52pmI expect more substitutions in the second half, with City likely to make a number of changes during the half time period.

2.56pmCity have been a bit rigid if you ask me, Suarez and Nasri apart. The plot of breaking in midfield and playing the ball wide to the overlapping Kolarov has been all too predictable. They need to get the right-back breaking forward more so that Razak in midfield can move inside and get involved with the build-up.

2.56pmOne of the holding midfielders also need to break forward more to support the attack, although it will probably be a very different City eleven in the second half.

3.00pmIt will be interesting to see if City keep the same formation in the second half, depending on what changes they make.

3.01pmAs far as Supersport are concerned, it will be much of the same. They will need to tighten up at the back, but just a little more quality in the final third and they could be a goal up already.

3.06pmBear with me while I clarify all the City half-time changes ahead of the second half.

3.06pmIn fact, it is a different 11, so...

46 minCity get the second period underway, I will update the side as soon as possible.

49 minPantillimon is in goal. Lescott comes on at left-back. Rodwell and Yaya Toure come in in midfield, with Scott Sinclair on the left and Milner on the right.

51 minNastasic and Boyata have come on in central defence, with Alex Nimely on in attack.

52 minTwo other youngsters, Huws in midfield and Facey at right-back are also on. So that's 11 changes for City, despite the fact that there were only supposed to make up to nine.

53 minNo changes for Supersport at the break, thankfully.

54 minHuws flicks the ball wide for Sinclair, who checks inside and plays the ball to Rodwell but the midfielder's shot is closed down after he takes a touch into the box. Supersport clear.

56 minGOAL! Supersport United 1-0 Manchester City (Niang)

57 minSupersport take the lead! Gyimah crosses the ball into the middle of the box, where Niang gets between Nastasic and Boyata the head into the ground and past the goalkeeper.

59 minWell, City's new lineup are undone after less than 15 minutes. It was a good cross from the left but with only Niang in the middle, City might feel they should have cleared the ball.

61 minLovely interplay in midfield from Supersport and Doutie flicks it the Borman with backheels the ball to Chenene. They go back across midfield, keeping possession before Mathebula breaks and tries to find Niang, but Lescott cuts the ball out.

63 minSUBSTITUTION: Erasmus, Maluleke, Mulenga and Grobler come on in place of Doutie, Niang, Borman and Medledle for Supersport. The home side also change their goalkeeper again.

64 minLescott plays the line for Sinclair but he slips as he tries to come inside. Huws wins the ball back and plays it to Rodwell, who finds Nimely. Facey picks it up on the right but plays a poor ball inside.

66 minThe game is becoming stretched now with City pushing for an equaliser and Supersport more than happy to play on the break. Grobler attacks the ball in the middle and the hosts win a corner.

68 minCity break well on the right as Milner flicks the ball wide to Huws before getting it back but his cross is cleared. City regain the ball and it breaks to Huws on the edge of the box, but he drags his shot harmlessly wide.

70 minCity win a free-kick on the edge of the box on the right but Milner's delivery is poor. He gets a second opportunity and does better but Supersport manage to clear.

72 minHuws finds Milner, who tries to find Facey on the overlap but his cross is blocked and City win the corner. They work it short to Milner whose shot is also blocked and the hosts clear. City are piling on the pressure now.

73 minExcellent counter again by Supersport down the right as Erasmus beats Huws and plays in Grobler, who turns well and returns the ball but Boyata manages to close down the shot and the goalkeeper gathers easily.

74 minCHANCE! Nimely plays in Milner, who strides into the box and fires across goal. He beats the goalkeeper but his effort is blocked by a defender on the line. The referee waves away Milner's appeals of handball.

78 minMilner delivers a corner but Supersport clear easily and break. Facey does well to win the ball and plays it to Toure, who finds Sinclair. Supersport defend well though and force City back.

80 minSUBSTITUTION: Pietersen comes on for Diouf, for the hosts.

82 minGOAL! Supersport United 2-0 Manchester City (Erasmus)

83 minThat should seal the game for the home side. Another fantastic counter attack as Erasmus ran off the right win behind the City defence to poke the ball past the onrushing Pantillimon.

84 minMore worrying for City though is the fact that Yaya Toure has hobbled off the pitch and down the tunnel.

84 minSUBSTITUTION: Devante Cole replaces Yaya Toure.

86 minSUBSTITUTION: Mphalele comes on for Supersport, replacing Chenene.

89 minReally clever play on the break again from Supersport. Erasmus comes off the right and plays in Grobler, who flicks it first time to Mphalele. He lets the ball run between his legs and Erasmus picks it up on the edge of the box but his shot is easily saved by the goalkeeper.

90 minSupersport are comfortable now, passing the ball confidently as City struggle to get close to them. Three minutes of added time will be played.

90+1 minCity almost undone again as Mphalele plays in Grobler, but the forward's touch lets him down and the away side clear the ball.

90+3 minFULL TIME: Supersport United 2-0 Manchester City

3.57pmSo, a 2-0 defeat for Manuel Pellegrini in his first game in charge. I'm sure he won't be too bothered. He has several players still to return to this squad and today gave him the opportunity to look at some of his younger players, which is always important.

3.58pmA defeat is a defeat, though, and even at this very early stage of the season, City's creativity in the final third will come under scrutiny. They rarely threatened the Supersport goal in the game.

3.59pmThe hosts meanwhile, can be very proud of their display. After a shaky start they played well, showing confidence and inventiveness on the break, and when they were forced to defend, they did that competently as well.

4 pmHope you enjoyed our live coverage of the match. Thank you for joining me this afternoon. Have a good day.

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