Off-target Tevez has City living on their nerves

Manchester City 1 Blackpool 0: Johnson ensures third straight win but misses make it far from comfortable

Considering Jérôme Boateng's weekly salary would probably be enough to pay the wages of the entire Blackpool squad, this was one of the bigger mis-matches in Premier League history. But the reality was that City were forced to cling on in the final 10 minutes after failing to kill off their visitors and the Eastlands crowd will have to get used to having their nerves shredded in the final months of the season.

Adam Johnson scored the only goal but Carlos Tevez failed with a poor penalty shortly after and missed several more chances. Typical of the contrasting standing was Matt Phillips, a summer signing from Wycombe, dominating the former Lazio defender Aleksander Kolarov in the second half. Yet City collecteda third straight win, an impressive and significant response to losing to Everton before Christmas, ahead of their trip to Arsenal on Wednesday evening, although David Silva and Kolarov are doubtful after picking up knee problems.

"What we didn't do was take advantage of some good opportunities to get that second goal," said the City coach David Platt. "In recentgames we've managed to do that. It gives you that cushion and enables players to play with a bit more freedom. If you haven't got that second it gets a bit nail-biting and we were probably the happier side to hear the final whistle. The disappointing thing for anyone up front is when they haven't had opportunities on goal. Carlos probably had eight or nine efforts on goal and if he continues to do that the goals will come."

With their fine away record, Blackpool saw no need to change their positive approach and produced an early opportunity when Joe Hart was forced to swat away a curling effort from Gary Taylor-Fletcher.

Johnson is not alone in having his problems with City's manager Roberto Mancini, and yesterday was the first time he had started successive Premier League matches this season, but he made the difference for his side who were without Mario Balotelli due to a minor knee injury. Taylor-Fletcher failed to get enough distance as he headed away Silva's corner and Johnson's drive deflectedoff Stephen Crainey and past Richard Kingson. Two minutes later, Yaya Touré was on a typical burst in the area when he was hauled over by Luke Varney but Tevez wasted the chance to add a second from the penalty spot.

It was typical of his afternoon and with Blackpool seeming to break forward after each missed opportunity it could have cost City. There were further misses when he was sent clear by Touré only to fall over after he had dribbled past Kingson and he also glanced a header wide from James Milner's cross.

With the crowd becoming increasingly anxious, Hart turned a shot over the bar from Neal Eardley and from the corner that followed the goalkeeper had to tip away Brett Ormerod's header. "If improvement was a piece of string it would go from here to Blackpool and back again for every one of my players," Blackpool manager Ian Holloway said. "Putting Matt Phillips on gave us hope and belief because he's not scared of anything or anyone. He pulled one playerinside out and he was taken off and then he did it to the new bloke and I was wondering if they had any more left-backs to put on.

"We've proved a few people wrong and hopefully we'll continue to do that. We were going to be the worst team ever. Six points after Christmas it said in one paper. I don't read papersanymore, I just look at the pictures. I don't think we'll get 96 points but I just want as many as we can possibly get, to play like we did."

After scoring his goal, Johnson revealed a t-shirt with "RIP Dale" as a tribute to his friend, the Rushden goalkeeper Dale Roberts, who killed himself last month.

Attendance: 47,296

Referee: Mark Clattenburg

Man of the match: Y Touré

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Powdered colors are displayed for sale at a market ahead of the Holi festival in Bhopal, India
techHere's what you need to know about the riotous occasion
Arts and Entertainment
Larry David and Rosie Perez in ‘Fish in the Dark’
theatreReview: Had Fish in the Dark been penned by a civilian it would have barely got a reading, let alone £10m advance sales
News
Details of the self-cleaning coating were published last night in the journal Science
science
News
Approved Food sell products past their sell-by dates at discounted prices
i100
News
Life-changing: Simone de Beauvoir in 1947, two years before she wrote 'The Second Sex', credited as the starting point of second wave feminism
peopleHer seminal feminist polemic, The Second Sex, has been published in short-form to mark International Women's Day
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

Homeless Veterans campaign

Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

Paul Scholes column

I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable