As the season draws ever-closer, we here at the Center Circle are going to start looking at what each of the top teams in the EPL are looking at this season. The oft-maligned blue brother of Manchester has made my favorite offseason moves and, for me, has brought in the most capable coach to lead one of last season’s top four teams. It is difficult to see a more capable team in this season’s build-up to take home the crown…but, this is City…and anything can happen.
The defense side for City had the best record in the EPL last season and it is difficult to see them not improving on that this upcoming season. Vincent Kompany can cancel out any poor defender that plays next to him and he continues to be one of the best in the world at his position. Micah Richards is back this season and he looks like he may become the premier left-back in the world. Some of his attacking runs since returning from injury show a level of strength that most wingbacks do not even dream about having.
Joe Hart is also continuing to become a fearsome number one that seems to only improve as he grows older. If City does not have to depend on Joleon Lescott for the entire season, then their back-line will be proficient at defending and chipping in with key goals.
The City midfield is also filled with a good mix of hard-working midfielders and flashy players that will allow them to always have great defending cover and people willing to throw in some goals. Milner, Barry, Rodwell, and Toure can all cover some serious ground and Toure is always good for a few goals. If Nasri can rediscover his form, if Silva continues being amazing, if Fernandinho, Navas, and Garcia skip the typical transfer “hangover” then the midfield may have a fantastic season.
The attacking force in City is always terrifying and the loss of Tevez does not seem to have really lessened the fear that they can put in opposing defenses. Dzeko and Aguero always seem capable of scoring 20 goals a season and Jovetic will be looking to make a big enough splash so that he can justify his transfer and steal some minutes from the other City strikers. Considering that City’s inability to score was the reason they finished second last season, it seems that a small boost in scoring could be the push to get them to the top.
Manuel Pellegrini is looking to snag his first big European trophy and this situation will definitely be one of the best that he can get without bringing home major European silverware. Considering the weapons he has at his disposal, he will definitely suffer the brunt of the blame if City are unable to bring home the goods this season.
Predicted best case scenario: City win the title in convincing fashion. The squad scores a record number of goals and this squad finally makes City’s first decent CL run.
Predicted worst case scenario: City snag second place in a end of season showdown. Lescott had to play most of the season and he costs them everything.