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Can Manchester City Manage Expectations?


man city crest Can Manchester City Manage Expectations?

Photo by ivan03

Manchester City fans may be in for a rude awakening if they honestly believe they will win the Premier League this season. They may not win a title just yet, especially after coach Roberto Mancini has already indicated that his first aim is to get the team qualified for the Champions League next season. That could also explain his tactics to defend against the top tier teams in the league that are arguably better than his and settle for a point. Despite this scheme however, several football pundits in England still have City as title contenders. They are currently in the top three and threaten to top the standings at any given moment. Additionally, they have one of the most expensive squads in the EPL and once the wage bill is high, high productivity and results are expected.

However, City’s defensive tactics against big teams, while producing the desired results for Mancini, only proves the clubhouse crisis at Eastlands. A team so gifted with a strong attacking force should utilize their prowess to get maximum points. Not only are these matches becoming increasingly unentertaining, it defeats the purpose of promoting rivalries. Now all one would expect from a Manchester derby is a 0-0 draw. City’s last encounter with Arsenal was also thoroughly disappointing. City should pursue a more aggressive tactic against these teams but this could be easier said. Mancini still has to figure out what to do with high paying, talented players who are not getting even the light of day on the pitch in crucial matches. Why not encourage a combination of tough defense and overwhelming attacking with City’s wealth of talent? Time and time again, it’s clear to see that Mancini has a difficult time choosing the best squad without angering or frustrating one of his superstars. The clubroom atmosphere must not be the most pleasant in all the EPL.

With that said, City must at all times seek to get the edge over all its major opponents if it wants to stay on top. Drawing with either Manchester United or Arsenal only gives their opponents the upper edge. And while Mancini is only interested now to make it to the Champions League before thinking of a Premier League title, I don’t think he can comfortably achieve that goal with such tactics, especially when there are hungrier and more aggressive teams competing in this league.

It’s only a matter of time before Manchester City realize that buying its way to success is not the formula for a successful and potent team. It might provide a burst of energy on the pitch and heighten the hopes of your fans who believe they are finally coming out of the doldrums of a title wilderness, but there are no guarantees. Mancini’s comfort in just qualifying for the Champions League may not appease his wealthy team owners and even the most ardent Eastland fans.

Expectations are still high for Manchester City, but it will take witty management of the available assets by Mancini to deliver the desired results while at the same time pleasing his boss, players and fans. Based on this assessment, I don’t think any manager would want to be in his shoes.

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14 Responses to Can Manchester City Manage Expectations?

  1. Melon Man says:

    Have you looked at any postings on City forums at all?

    No City fans are expecting to win the Premiership this year, top four is the aim – from owner to fans this is the stated target, with a cup victory of some sort a definite aim also.

    The analysis of the “defensive” tactics is naive and stereotypical of what uninformed media poo-stirrers and opposition fans are regurgitating without bothering to check the stats and the fans’ opinions.

    Waste of my bandwidth, must try harder.

  2. Why? says:

    ‘Manchester City fans may be in for a rude awakening if they honestly believe they will win the Premier League this season’

    They are not and never have been.

    ‘That could also explain his tactics to defend against the top tier teams’

    Mancini’s tactics are not to lose against the top 3 or 4 and have worked very well except for at home against Arsenal mainly due to a dodgy sending off!

    ‘Mancini has a difficult time choosing the best squad without angering or frustrating one of his superstars’

    Seems to be working very well to me!

    ‘It’s only a matter of time before Manchester City realize that buying its way to success is not the formula for a successful and potent team.’

    Yes it is, Man Utd, Chelsea and Blackburn have all proved this!

    ‘Mancini’s comfort in just qualifying for the Champions League may not appease his wealthy team owners and even the most ardent Eastland fans.’

    The owner requires a top 4 finish NOT a league title this is more the common knowledge as for the fans the same can be said!

    ‘Expectations are still high for Manchester City, but it will take witty management of the available assets by Mancini to deliver the desired results while at the same time pleasing his boss, players and fans. Based on this assessment, I don’t think any manager would want to be in his shoes.’

    Before the season started the Gaffer did a blog on how people thought the league would look come may, he should show it again as around 80% on here have City not even in there top 6!!

    Andre you have practically nothing right, I don’t know why you bothered. Gaffer why don’t you get someone who actually doesn’t want City to fail to write an article? It won’t get as many replies I guess. Oh well carry on with the clueless bitters then LOL.

  3. jb says:

    More nitwit comments from another blogger who finds it easy to jump on the anti-City bandwagon because it’s the “in vogue” thing to do. Load up the post with a few half-truths and outright inaccuracies, and (Voila!)… you’ve got a blog post. Ho hum, nothing to see here… move on.

  4. Guy says:

    Come again? If I’m a City fan I have to be scratching my head at this entire article. They sit in third place, have won four of their last six and absent some collapse in their remaining fourteen matches are assured a Champions League spot for next season. That’s not good enough? Mancini has to change his tactics? Geez, I wish Fulham had the same problems.

    I felt from the beginning that Mancini’s biggest job was going to be handling his roster and I think he has done that well. The results speak for themselves and I can’t imagine there are many, if any, City fans who are upset with them.

    Last year I didn’t think there was any way Man. Utd. could lose the title. It seemed theirs for the taking. Wrong again, Guy. This year I think any of the current top four teams could yet pull it off…..including that poor struggling team from Eastlands. Even if they don’t, I think the blue side of Manchester will still be a pretty damn happy place.

    • Dylan Thomas says:

      Agreed. Despite all the money they’ve spent, the objective is a top four finish. Everything else is a bonus. Once they get into the Champions League, they’ll be very confident in their chances of staying there – especially with the kind of spending power they have.

      While they aren’t always enjoyable to watch, they are getting the results they need – at least for now.

  5. BBC says:

    Just turrible. . . turrible

  6. Troy says:

    Even as a MUFC supporter, Ithought this post was way off-base. Maybe try adding a quote from a City player or Mancini to support your thesis, otherwise this opinion and generalization carries no weight.

    Also, please use paragraph breaks. Seeing big blocks of type like that is a real turn-off (and then finishing it without noticing any real substance is a bigger turn-off).

    P.S. EPL Talk, please spare me from your weekly dribble about MCFC. It seems that every week there’s someone different writing some horrid piece about City and giving no real insight. (Trust me, I’m not defending City, I’m just tired of seeing people write the same thing over and over again.)

  7. Evan says:

    Horrible horrible article. There aren’t any City supporters I know of that are expecting to win the title.
    Also, Mancini doesn’t have overly defensive tactics. Man City are the 4th highest scoring club in the league. More than Tottenham, yet I dont see you writing any articles about them.

  8. SoccerLimey says:

    I think the writer has a point. City’s tactics against the bigger clubs have been negative, but I think that’s the Italian side of the manager. Nothing wrong with it, except you have to try to win the big games.

    The League this year has been a huge surprise and I think managers have been more cautious, even Ferguson, and more competitive mid-table teams have had some surprising results.

    City won’t win it this year, and I doubt many of their fans think so either, but they are a factor going forward.

  9. trickybrkn says:

    Ohh come on… City was a bounce club until they got oil money.

    I always had a soft spot for City. They where the second team in Manchester, a fighter. Now… its a rich club with a huge squad and no harmony.

    City fans I know are just happy to be treading in the deep end, and maybe they win the league, but Champions League will bring the big players, and silverware pursuit.

    It annoys me along with the meme that Tottenham is suddenly a big club…
    Recently Harry Redknapp slagged off his former club West Ham while defending not selling off Bale. Paraphrasing, when clubs sell off their best players they are setting themselves up for defeat… Yet… Redknapp lined his pocket with the 18mil from the sale of Rio to Leeds while at West Ham. I guess the real story is you line your pocket till you don’t need the cash anymore then you become a proper manager… or maybe its all just pretzel logic.

    Perhaps Tottenham/Man City are just this years Blackburn of the 90′s???? perhaps Redknapp should pay his taxes of his transfer profits… perhaps.

  10. Andre Huie says:

    Thanks for all the comments. However, there was a very important point I forgot to mention in the article which I’ll state here much to the dismay of City fans. I predict than Man City will finish outside the top 4. And for those who disagree with the article, just look at today’s result against Birmingham City. My point exactly!

    • Why? says:

      No bitterness here then LOL. I supose Spud or Chelsea will take 3rd and 4th then? Oh dear just look at their results at brum, nice call Andre ‘the football genius’ Huie, your point exacty eh? What a TOOL!

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