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Roberto Mancini must be applauded for trying to mix things up. It was clear from preseason that the Italian was considering the 3-5-2, and it's what all good coaches do to stay on top—adapt, create, revolutionise.
It's one of the reasons Pep Guardiola was so good every season. He started with wing-backs, moved to three at the back then finished with the false nine.
Unfortunately for Mancini, it's not gone how he would have liked. He seems to have confused his entire defence, and they've failed to keep a clean sheet in six attempts. The formation doesn't suit his attacking options, either.
The Citizens lined up in the 3-5-2 against Real Madrid, and Mancini could not find a way to fit Edin Dzeko into the side with David Silva, Carlos Tevez and Samir Nasri already on the pitch.
Mario Balotelli was injured and couldn't play, but he would have been almost impossible to slot in. He could have taken up either Silva or Nasri's role, but their starting positions are too deep for Super Mario's liking.
Dzeko came on as a substitute; Tevez moved back to a support striker's role. Still impossible to fit Balotelli in.
Verdict: not viable