Manchester City have crashed back down to earth following their nightmare Champions League outing against Barcelona on Wednesday evening.
The Premier League leaders – who have now failed to win any of their last four matches in all competitions – took a beating to their confidence as their hosts ran out 4-0 winners at the Nou Camp.
City were never going to be favourites going into the clash away from home – but few would have predicted they would taste defeat in such devastating fashion.
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An already difficult task was made nearly impossible as Pep Guardiola’s side trailed 1-0 early in the second half, when ex-Barcelona goalkeeper Claudio Bravo produced an absolute clanger.
The Chilean carelessly gifted the ball to Luis Suarez and then handled his ensuing shot outside the box – an offence that led to a straight red card and an early bath.
As one might have expected, City completely unravelled and went on to concede another three goals as they stumbled through the final 37 minutes of the match with ten men.
Bravo has understandably been the subject of fierce criticism following his blunder, and some have even suggested the man he replaced at the Etihad might have done a better job in the circumstances.
As per Sky Sports, ex-City striker Niall Quinn believes his former team may have ended the match with all their players on the pitch had Joe Hart been in goal.
"It was pretty horrific what he did,” he said.
"He was in total control of the situation. He was well outside the box and you thought he was going to take it down, but he tried to play it first time.
"Suarez literally came to a stop waiting for it to be dealt with and couldn't believe his luck that it was kicked straight to him, so he controlled it and tried to play it with a bit of height around the goalkeeper into the goal.
"Bravo had to put his hands up and save it from going in. Having got back into the game and starting to look the better team, it was the death knell really to go down to 10 men.
"Although Barcelona were not at their best you could see they were going to have more space and time and the game was over as a contest.
"My first thought was 'would Joe Hart have done that?' Not in a million years.”
Hart – who was loaned to Torino last summer after Bravo was signed from Barcelona – is so far enjoying his stint in Italy.
He has made six league appearances for his new club this season while keeping two clean sheets.
The England international could be forgiven for feeling slightly chuffed that his replacement – brought in by Guardiola for his superior ball skills – has made headlines in such an ironic manner.
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