Danny Pugsley for Metro:
And for all the prioritisation and juggling of competitions is the biggest frustration. Whilst one or two fringe players came into the side this was no weakened side. City were even largely in control over the first 45 minutes yet fell away after the break and Middlesbrough were deserving of their win.
There may be no long term ramifications of the defeat (although a third successive defeat should it occur at Stamford Bridge would see a sharpening of the knives) in terms of their hopes for the remainder of the season but this defeat, in isolation, has dashed hopes of success in one of the four competitions they contest.