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Manchester City Defeats United to Blow the Title Race Wide Open: Who Will Win It Now?

Manchester City Manchester United English Premier League trophy 2011 2012 title race 600x600 Manchester City Defeats United to Blow the Title Race Wide Open: Who Will Win It Now?

The Premier League title race was blown wide open Monday night after Manchester City deservedly beat Manchester one-nil at Etihad Stadium.

With the three points, Manchester City now climbs into first place on goal difference. City’s faces Newcastle United on Sunday (8:30am ET, live on FOX Soccer) at St. James’s Park followed by their game versus Queens Park Rangers on the final day of the season, Sunday May 13. Manchester United, meanwhile, plays Swansea City on Sunday (11am ET, live on FOX Soccer) at Old Trafford. The Red Devils then play Sunderland on the final day of the season.

The win for Manchester City tonight means that the race for the 2011-12 Premier League title will be decided on the final day of the season. Importantly, City has the edge right now due to a better goal difference of +8 over United. However, City — on paper — faces the tougher opponents in the final two matches of the season. Newcastle is battling to qualify for the Champions League, while Queens Park Rangers will be battling to avoid relegation. United’s opponents — Swansea and Sunderland — have nothing to play for other than pride and a chance to earn more revenue for their club by moving up higher in the table.

Back to the Etihad, it was a feisty affair between the red and blue half of Manchester on Monday night. Ferguson got what he deserved by setting out his team with a very defensive formation in the first half which almost worked until Vincent Kompany scored with a header near the stroke of half time. With United forced into pushing forward in the second half, it was always going to be difficult to beat City.

Now with two matches to go for both Manchester clubs, this promises to be one of the most exciting Premier League finales in recent history especially if both clubs can win on Sunday. The advantage is with Manchester City right now, but for how long? If City can win both of their matches, the Premier League title will theirs — done and dusted. If City slips up, then that gives Manchester United the opportunity to win it.

Call me a fool, but I still believe that Manchester United will end up winning the Premier League title. Sir Alex Ferguson’s side still has the experience and mentality necessary to remain focused on getting the maximum six points in their final two matches. The pressure is now on Manchester City, not United. Manchester City players know that the Premier League title is theirs to either win or throw away. At this point, City is favorites to win the title so that takes the pressure off Manchester United. The Red Devils will go to Old Trafford on Sunday and will beat Swansea, and will beat Sunderland on the final day of the season. Who knows whether Manchester City can beat Newcastle at St. James’ Park. If they can, and if they beat QPR on the final day of the season, full credit to them. They deserve to win. But they need to make sure that they don’t start to believe that they’ve won the Premier League title before they have it in their grasps.

Note to American readers: With City winning today, I expect that since ESPN — having the first pick of the games in the US — to wait until after next Sunday’s matches before they decide which game they’ll show live on ESPN2 on Sunday, May 13 — the final day of the season. As it stands now, it’ll probably be Manchester City versus Queens Park Rangers, but if City lose or draw on Sunday and United win, it’ll probably be Sunderland versus Manchester United.

Vote in the poll and share your opinions below regarding who you think will win the 2011-12 Premier League title race.

This entry was posted in Leagues: EPL, Manchester City, Manchester United. Bookmark the permalink.

About Christopher Harris

Founder and publisher of World Soccer Talk, Christopher Harris is the managing editor of the site. He has been interviewed by The New York Times, The Guardian and several other publications. Plus he has made appearances on NPR, BBC World, CBC, BBC Five Live, talkSPORT and beIN SPORT. Harris, who has lived in Florida since 1984, has supported Swansea City since 1979. He's also an expert on soccer in South Florida, and got engaged during half-time of a MLS game. Harris launched EPL Talk in 2005, which was rebranded as World Soccer Talk in 2013.
View all posts by Christopher Harris →

15 Responses to Manchester City Defeats United to Blow the Title Race Wide Open: Who Will Win It Now?

  1. daS says:

    this is a hard one. man u have sunderland and swansea, while man c have newcastle and qpr. it could easily go either way. man c definitely have the harder games, but it will be tight,

  2. Frill Artist says:

    As a Man U fan, I’m actually worried more about Swansea than Newcastle and QPR combined.

  3. Smokey Bacon says:

    City still have to go to Newcastle which is now arguably their game of the season even more than tonight was. The toon will be more than fired up as they are still in with a shout of the Champions league themselves. United will likely take 6 points so City cannot afford to drop any.

    Normally you don’t question Fergie’s team selection but Rooney up front on his own and no Valencia did them no favors at all. Basically handed the initiative to City from the off. United just do containment very well. Their natural game is attack with wide players at pace. They need to revert to 4-4-2 and hope Pardew has something up his sleeve this weekend. Otherwise its City’s title as QPR will just roll over and die like they did at Chelsea.

  4. dano328 says:

    It does seem ManU are very beatable right now but they never fall into extended slumps. Loss, Draw, Loss. This is their poorest form of the season. I can see Swansea getting a result.

    • EJN says:

      No offense, but you do not know UTD very well. This may be a transitional UTD squad that has been playing a bit under par at various moments throughout the season, but this team will never quit. Swansea is going to get battered. UTD is out to make up the goal difference and know they must win the remaining two matches. City has the two more difficult matches by far. I think a certain player that goes by the name of Cisse might have something to say in this title race.

  5. QPR_Fan says:

    See how Newcastle go against Chelsea first. Especially after Wigan loss and possibly losing vs Chelsea, maybe City can ride that trend.

  6. Thomas says:

    Newcastle will try to work City on the break.

    Sure the pressure is on City now, but let’s be real – this was a huge win, and the pressure couldn’t have been higher than it was today.

    City have had an inferiority complex to United forever now, and much was made of how their team was devoid of any “winners”. I think they deserve a lot of praise for their performance against United.

    For me there’s no love lost for either team – but the fact that City have now beaten United twice I feel it would be great if they can round out the Prem.

    If United win because City drop points, so be it, but in honesty, with the race so close, as a complete neutral I’d like to see City win. Not to mention it would be nice to see someone else win the EPL (the whole City bought the Title thing aside).

    Hell, even if they win on goal differential, it’ll feel “clean” as they were +6 against United this year.

  7. Joe956 says:

    As a United fan, I’d be worried about a grade school team facing us. We are terrible as crown contenders and we just don’t have enough good players, bottom line. To win the Premier League now you have to be able to buy the title instead of earning it. City will rule until their arab owners grow bored with winning here and hopefully take their loot to the La Liga.

    • Why? says:

      Joe in 1989 Man City battered Utd 5-1 with a team that cost a little over £2m. While Utd had by far the most expensive team in the league (in fact more that it had ever seen before) worth over £19m. Now that’s over nine times what City’s was right? So is the team that beat Utd last night even remotely even near twice the cost of the Utd team? I’ll give you the answer, no it’s no where slightly even near it. So what the hell are u on about? Surely if City are buying it now that is exactly what Utd did back then? When Utd won the premier league for the first time they had one youth player fully involved with the team and even he was poached from another club (Ryan Giggs). I hope this puts and end to this built team nonsense you lot have in your heads as it just isn’t true it that team was brought in for big money. Utd hadn’t won anything of note for years, yet they spent massively more than anybody else and that’s why they won simple to all it would seem but the dimmest of people, mainly those who just happen to be either Utd’s fantasy ‘we did it the right way’ dreamer fans or morons incapable of looking at the facts and reading bias pro ‘Worlds Greatest team’ media bolloxks both some how trying to make out Utd didn’t spend the vast amounts of money they clearly did to win.

      What you may ask about those great owners at the time, did they get bored and go to La Liga? No they continued milking there new cash cow for all they could that same cash cow that only a year or so before they were desperately trying to off load to anybody with a couple of grand in the bank (Knighton etc) but nobody wanted it, so they continued selling their dodgy off meat as butchers to the North West of England’s schools, that how sxxt they were. Then Finally they sold to the highest bidder when they thought they would get the most money they could for there own grubby little pockets not caring less who they sold to, as we can now clearly see now.

      You my odd little fellow should learn a bit more about what ur sprouting nonsense about because it kinda makes you look bitter and foolish at the same time. Well done you!!!

    • ایرون says:

      tokhmak

  8. scrumper says:

    The Newcastle v City game is the title decider. QPR will be a walk over for City.

  9. Mufc77 says:

    It’s citys title to lose now but it’s far from over yet. Citys away form hasnt been the best this season so it’s not an automatic 3 points against Newcastle. I can see utd putting 4 or 5 past Swansea which would make it very interesting going into the final weekend.

    Gaffer if both teams Finnish with the same goal difference what the second tie breaker? I’d imagine it would be goals scored then goals conceded then if by some chance it was still level it would go to the head to head match up. This brings back memories of Michael thomas against liverpool in the late 80s.

  10. Jean says:

    Still think its all ManU here. They can still win it here. ManC can choke any second now…

    • Why? says:

      They could choke any second your right but as there tails are more than up can’t see it, that’s not to say they couldn’t drop points in these games as they can. To use a Mancini phase ‘in football any thing can happen’. I don’t know if you’ve noticed but Utd have gone past even the heimlich maneuver stage they looked down and out last night especially Rooney. I mean whats to say Utd will beat Swansea never mind Sunderland away? They look the more libel to chock to me or have you not noticed the were 8 points a head of City a few weeks ago? It looks like they are the ones bottling it to me not city dont forget some strange reffing errors that kept the in touch! City have a hard game yes but it’s not so much hard games that have tripped utd up is it? Blackburn, Wigan come to mind.

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