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In focus: Christoph Zimmermann

9 April 2020

One of City’s more senior defenders, it may come as a surprise to some that this is Christoph Zimmermann’s Premier League debut season, much like his younger comrades.

Despite injury complications earlier in the season, Zimmermann has come back to the City squad and shown defensive quality game-to-game, whether it be alongside club captain Grant Hanley, or Ben Godfrey.

Here’s Zimmermann’s top three games this season! ⬇

3. Crystal Palace (H)

One of Zimmermann’s higher rated performances this season came from the unfortunate draw to Roy Hodgson’s Crystal Palace side, a game so close to seeing the Canaries raise three points, just to be denied of that by a late VAR decision in Palace’s favour.

It was a performance that many may not have noted too dearly whilst watching live, after City were on the front foot for a large majority of the game. However, looking back on it shows just how crucial the centre-half was to City’s defence, halting attacks in their tracks with big last-man tackles and well-timed blocks to save Tim Krul the trouble.

Despite the last-minute equaliser Palace found themselves, with the help of VAR, Zimmermann played out of his socks in his best efforts to keep the lead.

Whoscored.com gave the German a 7.10 rating for the game, meaning with a clean sheet added, this would’ve been much higher and one of the best defensive performances the Canaries have seen all season.

2. Liverpool (H)

When the world champions come knocking on the door of Carrow Road, most would expect the Canaries to be the underdogs. A newly promoted side facing off against the winners of the Champions League and the Club World Cup, many would expect the latter to dominate.

Although it was Liverpool who eventually took the three points home, City made them work unbelievably hard for it. The defence was, for the most part, locked up tight and didn’t give away too many unnecessary freekicks, whilst the attack was stretching the opposition more than they’ve been stretched against most sides throughout the course of the season.

Among those City shirts was Zimmermann, who once again kept his cool under pressure and bailed the Canaries out of danger many times. Perfectly placed tackles and deflections kept Krul inactive for the most part, only relying on him to work his magic a few times here and there.

City would’ve been disappointed to see their efforts go for nought, as substitute Sadio Mané came on and blistered a well-taken volley to the back of the net, especially since some were calling for a foul on Zimmermann from the Senegal forward.

Regardless of the result, Zimmermann earned his second-best performance this season against the side, with Whoscored.com rating the centre-half at 7.13.

1. Southampton (A)

Zimmermann’s best game came against the Saints in the unfavoured 2-1 loss back in December, just his third game back from injury, yet the game City were probably most reliant on the German to keep cool when under attack.

Individually, it was a great game for Zimmermann, even with the score not quite agreeing with that. Both goals conceded came from set pieces, as opposed to open play, frankly because the Saints couldn’t break down the Zimmermann and Ben Godfrey synergy in open play!

The centre-half often used his huge physicality to shepherd away those who felt brave enough to face the 6”4 man. Those lucky enough to make it past Zimmermann then had the privilege of seeing him throw himself into big tackles to divert the opposition efforts.

Although it was City who left Southampton empty-handed, Zimmermann’s efforts were still largely impressive and led the defence by example once more, earning him his highest-rating so far this season of 7.26 from Whoscored.com.


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