So we didn’t quite get the dramatic ending to the Premier League season we experienced in 2012 when Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero popped up with the winner to clinch the title away from their neighbours Manchester United. However, for Manuel Pellegrini he will not care one bit how he won his first title in Europe and in his debut season at Man City.
What a difference 12 months makes. City fans were singing songs at the end of last season about how they wanted Roberto Mancini to stay at City and laughed off the rumoured arrival of Pellegrini but how they’ve admired his work this past year. The sophisticated manager has gone about his business quietly and resurrected a squad that lacked harmony and unity. Now he has got players such as Samir Nasri and Edin Dzeko to really make a difference and in the end these players contributed massively towards City’s triumph.
The start of the season wasn’t particularly a joyous time for City. At the Ettihad Stadium it was all plain sailing but away from home it was anything but. 4 points from a possible 18 on their travels that saw them succumb to defeats at Cardiff City and Aston Villa were particular low points. But slowly but surely, the players started to buy into the style that Pellegrini insisted on which was attacking football and going forward in numbers.
City scored a massive 102 goals altogether which was just 1 shy of the record set by Chelsea. They also conceded 37 goals which is just under once a game and this is despite having the core at the time present for only 5 matches this season. The core consisting of Vincent Kompany, Yaya Toure, David Silva and Sergio Aguero. Of course they have amazing strength in depth thanks to the millions invested in them by their Qatar owners but Pellegrini has rotated the squad around perfectly to achieve a title winning season.
Another turning factor in the league was the central defender alongside Vincent Kompany. Joleon Lescott has fallen out of favour whilst Matija Nastastic lacks experience which is why Pellegrini brought in Martin Demechelis, a player he knows well from his time at Malaga. The Argentine defender had severe difficulties adjusting to life in England but eventually settled in and earned high praise from the media for his defensive performances. In the 20 games Kompany and Demechelis played together, they lost just once, away to Liverpool. In comparison to the Premier League games without the duo City played 18 games and lost 5.
The final interesting statistic from Manchester City’s title winning campaign was the amount of days they spent in first position. Just a mere 15 days City spent at the top of the table in comparison to Arsenal who held the top position for 128 days! Arsenal eventually finished in 4th position whilst City’s strong finish to the season earned them their second Premier League title in the space of 3 years.
What is next for the blue half of Manchester?
So do you think Manchester City can go back to back? Can they progress past the group stage of the Champions League or will the FIFA financial fairplay penalties stop them int heir tracks? Does the Shiek need to spend heavily once more to keep City on top? Sound off below in the comments section for your chance to win a $50 Premier Sports Memorabilia gift voucher.