The FA Community Shield might be a glorified friendly, but Manchester United and Manchester City are playing like the match matters. Well, maybe not in terms of quality, but certainly in terms of intensity. The two sides combined to earn five yellow cards in a first half filled with tough tackles. City will not complain though because thanks to goals by Joleon Lescott and Edin Dzeko they have themselves a 2-0 lead at the break.
It took just 15 minutes for the two sides to begin fighting as Nani and Dzeko got into a shoving match after the Bosnian took offense to a tackle from the midfielder. The little scuffle earned both yellow cards and right after Micah Richards was shown yellow for an awful tackle that United was right to ask for a red card on, but referee Phil Dowd never looked to even consider a sending off.
Dzeko may not have liked Nani's tackle, but he was fine when Patrice Evra fouled him. It gave the Citizens a dangerous free kick, which David Silva perfectly whipped in to the top of the six-yard box. David de Gea didn't have a chance to come off his line and punch so when Lescott got inside of Rio Ferdinand, the City defender was able to nod the ball home for the opener.
It looked like the scoreline would stay 1-0 at half, but a few minutes from halftime the Citizens struck again. Dzeko got space in the middle and United didn't close him down so he let rip a great, hard shot. It was one that de Gea should have saved, but with the ball dipping and diving he let it past him. It was a goal that will earn the new signing plenty of criticism, but Dzeko didn't mind because he had himself a goal for a 2-0 City lead.
This being a friendly, neither side will take too much from this match, but City would still like to grab a win and make a statement that they have every intention of challenging for the Premier League crown. They are 45 minutes away from doing so.