Updated: Oct 5, 2020
Whilst many predicted that City would claim a third successive title in the premier league with some challenge from Liverpool, no one could foresee the ease at which Liverpool cantered to the title.
Whilst City did only win the title by one point last season, 98 points to Liverpool's 97 points, momentum was with Manchester City heading into this season. However, a plethora of issues pegged city's squad back including injuries, lack of summer signings and bizarre team selection.
After winning back to back titles City arguably were in no rush to strengthen their team. Attacking wise there is no team in the premier league or even arguably Europe that can trump the Sterling, Augero Sane attacking trio. I say this as whilst other European teams have notable attacking forces, Liverpool certainly included, no other team have the incredible depth city have up front.
I could just have easily used the deadly trio of silva Jesus and Mahrez or even sane who I haven't even mentioned yet! However, City were In need of central defensive back up for the ageing and increasingly unreliable Fernandhinio, thus Rodri was bought. Similarly Walker at right back needed competition and the £60M edition of Juao Cancelo equally met the mark. However, with Kompany leaving there was a gaping casum in defensive leadership and with only three recognised defenders it was a recipe for disaster. Stones seems to flip a coin before every game to see if he'll play and with Laporte's major injury a cruel light was shone on Otamendi's defensive frailties. Contrastingly, Liverpool strengthened there only weak point, the midfield, with Keita and the fit again Oxlade Chamberlin filling the gaps nicely.
There is a large degree of bad luck on City's part swell this year with the squad being plagued by injuries yet again. Sanè, arguably their best player last season, De Bruyne and sterling close as-well, got injured in the community shield in august a week before the season started. He was out for 8 months. Although given the strength up front city did not have to look too far for options, Bernardo Silva and Rhian matrix to name just a few. The nail in the coffin for this season to me was Laporte injury against Burnley. As he was stretchered off the pitch so were city's chances of winning the title. Being in the PFA team of the year last season Laporte is by far their best defender and Stones somehow injured every other week combined with the ineptitude of Otamendi, Pep Guardiola's side were always going to suffer.
As an avid City fan it was tough to swallow some of the team selection choices. The defining decision to incorporate Fernadhinio into the back fofur was necessitated by a side rife with injuries. However, Guardiola seemed to prefer Fernandhinio over a fully fit john stones, again reflecting the complete lack of confidence in a defence that offered little to no suopport better than that of glass. A clear breakdown in trust between the young english centre back and the coach was no more evident than by the decision to drop Stones to the reserves for large parts of the final season, deflating any confidence the defender may have had left. There is also arguably significant pressure on english defenders to do well given the intense hunt to find England's new john terry, or new Ashley Cole. This golden era nostalgia places a spotlight on current