Michael Ball has made no excuses for City’s defeat to Fulham on Saturday.
Normally a left back, Michael shifted into central defence and took the captain’s armband in Richard Dunne’s injury-enforced absence, but he makes no attempt to shift the blame for the defeat off the whole team, saying:
“Fulham had nothing to lose, then they made a change up front and just went for it. We’ve only got ourselves to blame, we had our chances to kill them off and maybe we thought it was too easy. Maybe we thought we could get away without doing the dirty work and Fulham punished us for it.
“We played some great football in the first half, although we knew that Fulham could break well and were using an extra man in the middle of the park.
“Having said that, when we won the ball we were breaking well too and when we got the chances we stuck them away. We had more chances in the second half, but we didn’t want to do the dirty work that we had done before the break to kill the game.”
The final home game of the season reflected City’s overall campaign, as Michael admits:
“We wanted to finish at home on a high, but the game typified our season. We started really well, but in the second half of the season we could not get over the line and kill games off. We’ve let teams get back in, and the way we played against Fulham reflected the season. With more hard work we could have finished it off.”