Current Man City Crisis Proves They Aren’t A European Elite Side


Like Roberto Mancini did before him, Manuel Pellegrini has found out that it’s easier to win your first league title in England than it is to clinch your second. The Chilean boss has also seen that his squad aren’t quite at the level they need to be at to challenge the likes of Real Madrid, Barcelona and Bayern Munich in the illustrious Champions League.

If anything, this current Manchester City side have once again gone backwards.

The squad looks short of much inspiration and numbers in certain positions.

Yes Sergio Aguero is one of the worlds finest finishers but he can’t be expected to do it all by himself. In the league the Argentine hitman has bagged a whopping ten goals, unfortunately the rest of the squad put together only just manage to equal that ten goal haul.

City’s other ‘key’ men have had mixed seasons so far.

Yaya Toure at times just doesn’t look to have any fire in his belly. To me, it looks like the player desperately wants away from the Etihad.

David Silva can still provide plenty of magic but this term he’s not been consistent enough. That consistency is needed in the biggest of European encounters. If he and Yaya are failing to produce world class passes then they aren’t going to give the forwards enough ammunition. It’s as simple as that.

Club captain Vincent Kompany came out on twitter to say…

“When no one believes anymore it’s my role to still believe. Thanks for the great support today.”

If thats against the management team, his teammates or the clubs faithful then its quite damning. But even if you look at Kompany’s own performances this term, he’s not been the rock that he has been before. I wonder if playing two important games a week, especially on the back on a World Cup, is currently too much for the big Belgian. Again like in previous campaigns with City, Vincent has had to deal with a lot of chopping and changing when it comes to who partners him in defence. Both Marin Demichelis and Eliaquim Mangala are vying for that spot, yet neither are really putting forward convincing cases. Both can have good games quickly followed by matches full of errors, costly ones too. Frenchman Mangala is taking his time settling into the rigours of English football and also seems to be weighed down by his £32m transfer fee.

The managers belief in Joe Hart also seems to be an issue. The goalkeeper has had to bide his time waiting for contract talks to begin and has also seen teachers pet Willy Caballero come in from Malaga. The Englishman has remained number one but he knows the Argentine is always there ready to replace him. To be fair, Hart has needed added competition for the gloves, when he thinks he’s untouchable he usually has a big dip in form. But alas Hart’s main issue this term is the confusion of those defending in front of him, that makes the keeper a sitting target at times. The twenty-seven year old needs to have a greater air of authority when commanding his penalty area.

City have a very decent squad, they won the Premier League last season for crying out loud. But many in the pool are good without being great. Too be honest more has to be expected from the likes of Jesus Navas and Samir Nasri. These are players that when fit and play, don’t manage to fulfil their potentials.

As I’ve already said, Aguero has been a shining light up top with his goals. But in truth, the forward line at City is a bit threadbare. For frontline partners they only seem to have a choice of Stevan Jovetic and Edin Dzeko. Jovetic hasn’t been quite the creative wizard that City were hoping for, when they bought him last season. But the twenty-five year old from Montenegro is improving. Dzeko was Man City’s standard barer during last years title winning campaign but like so many others in the squad, he has suffered a lull in form.

Pellegrini didn’t replace Alvaro Negredo and that kind of shows all that is wrong with Manchester City at the moment. Now selling the Spaniard wasn’t the issue (his last six months at the Etihad were pretty awful), it was not bringing in a body to replace him. They need another forward to add more competition.

City have once again rested on their laurels since regaining the Premier League title. They really needed to build from a position of strength, especially when they knew Jose Mourinho and Chelsea were going to come back stronger.

UEFA’s Financial Fair Play ruling has really hampered City’s progress. They’ve needed to work on certain budgets and that meant that bringing in a new forward or world class maestro was beyond them this summer.

The signings of Mangala (who has failed to shore up the defence), Caballero, Fernando (brought to add depth to midfield and an ageing Frank Lampard were never going to turn Man City into Europe beaters.

In fairness though none of the English sides have covered themselves in ultimate glory this term in the Champions League. Arsenal have again looked fragile, Chelsea haven’t been ruthless enough and Liverpool have been weak and have been found wanting at this level.

Man City still have time to turn this season around. They can still qualify from the group (with plenty of luck) and still look the only credible threat to halting Chelsea’s charge for the title. But for the squad to turn the tide they need more from their star personnel and need to find consistency from the all the pool of players at Pellegrini’s disposal.

If they can’t make a fist of things in Europe or in the league, then it could be curtains for Manuel Pellegrini. Like Mancini, the Chilean coach may be good but just not good enough.


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