Tag Archives: Manchester City

England

Checking in on the Premier League contenders

At the end of the Premier League transfer window last summer, we posted an article projecting the potential top finishers in the league. At the time, Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, and Manchester United looked to be the most interesting clubs, in terms of moves made at that point and the potential to contend for a title. Well, now the 2014/15 EPL season is nearing its midpoint, and with the January transfer window open, here’s an updated look at the teams to watch.

Chelsea

In the summer article, we pointed out that all eyes would be on Jose Mourinho’s La Liga acquisitions (Cesc Fabregas and Diego Costa) to make the Blues’ season a successful one. But no one saw a Diego Costa performance this good coming. ESPN FC lists Costa with 14 goals through 17 Premier League performances thus far, and behind this superb play Chelsea has established itself as the league leader and likely champion. It’s worth mentioning that in recent weeks the Blues have come back down to Earth after a sensational first few months to the season. At one point Chelsea looked like an absolutely sure bet to win the title. Regardless of recent struggles or January transfer news, Jose Mourinho’s club remains the favourite.

Manchester City

It seems almost shocking to say so after Chelsea’s aforementioned hot start, but Manchester City has pulled even in the league standings with 46 points through 20 games played. They may get even deadlier in the attack if the transfer window goes as planned. BBC Sport’s football report suggests that City is inching closer to signing Wilfried Bony, who scored 20 goals in the league in 2014 and has unquestionably been Swansea City’s best player. We’ve seen time and time again that chemistry matters as much as talent in EPL play, and not every new addition comes in as seamlessly as Diego Costa did for Chelsea. But Bony would likely make Man City an even more formidable contender as it seeks to defend its 2013/14 title.

Manchester United

Manchester United began the league campaign looking somewhat shaky. It seems as if first-year manager Louis van Gaal has now earned the trust and confidence of his players, and Man Utd. is rolling in a way we haven’t seen in a few seasons. Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie have been terrific in engineering the Man Utd. attack, and summer addition Radamel Falcao hasn’t really even gotten going yet. But it’s on defense, and in goal, that Man Utd. is making the biggest difference. Despite the outstanding quality of keeper David de Gea, betting.betfair’s football news section reports that Man Utd is on the cusp of signing Barcelona goalkeeper Victor Valdes without a fight (more on that here). It’s a strange decision, but gives the club incredible depth in the back and a nice insurance policy moving forward. There’s still ground to make up in the standings, but United has moved within striking distance should Chelsea and Man City falter.

Arsenal

And finally, there’s Arsenal. After the summer signing of Alexis Sanchez, they looked to be one of the league’s most talented sides. The Gunners have been great at times, but they have also struggled to put together any sort of consistent run that could propel them to the top of the league. Arsenal currently resides outside of the top-five in the standings, but an active January transfer window could set the team up for a nice few months to finish the season. Having already been linked to the likes of Moussa Sissoko and Edinson Cavani, Arsenal is now rumoured to be pursuing Luis Suarez, who hasn’t quite found his groove at Barcelona. Any move of this magnitude would keep the 2014/15 Gunners very interesting.

England

Southampton players abandon ship as FFP proves ineffective

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It can happen to any club at any time. A good crop of players can be assembled under a young and promising coach when suddenly one of them ups and leaves for pastures new. Suddenly everyone begins to look at their own situation and ponder if life could be as good, if not better elsewhere. read more »

England

Aguero’s fitness essential for further success

Aguero

The final afternoon of the 2013/14 Premier League was surprisingly uneventful. Manchester City secured three points against a better than expected rally from West Ham whilst Liverpool’s victory over Newcastle secured them second place. Following a season of unpredictability it was a rather quiet end to the season and not the climactic one Sky Sports had hoped it would be.

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England

Premier League coming down to final month

Last season Manchester United ran away with the Premiership crown, clinching on April 22 and finishing 11 points clear of their Mancunian rivals to secure their record 20th top-flight title. Unlike that season, the 2013/14 campaign is packed with the kinds of drama the previous year lacked, as every fixture down the stretch for the top three clubs is crucial to their chances.

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England

Mind Games: Premier League preview

We appear to have arrived at the point in the season where certain managers decide that the best way to upset and distract their rivals is by doing a bit of trolling. Jose Mourinho displayed a lack of gracefulness a few days ago, and now Manuel Pellegrini has decided to rub David Moyes’ nose in a mess which, to be fair to Moyes, was left at Old Trafford (at least in part) by someone else.

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Spain

Valdes proves his worth to Barcelona yet again

Throughout history there have been sporting sides with members in it who are often an after thought or deemed to not be as important as others. The headlines following Barcelona’s Champions League tie with Manchester City largely centred around Andres Iniesta and Lionel Messi but there would be a good argument to suggest that their goalkeeper Victor Valdes was as, if not more, important in the Catalan’s win.

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England

Mourinho the master

This season was always going to be one of unpredictability. With the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson the seat at the head of the Premier League managers’ table was vacant for the first time in decades. The return of Jose Mourinho at Chelsea seemingly left this seat open for him to succeed and on the evidence this season this theory would seem correct.

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England

Silva making City tick

Manchester City scored their 100th league goal of the season on Saturday against Cardiff City and whilst much of the praise has gone to their strike force it could be argued that David Silva has been the key component. It cannot be a coincidence that his return to form has resulted in the sides’s magnificent form of late.

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Germany

Guardiola making doubters look foolish

How could Josep Guardiola possibly improve a side that has just won every trophy possible the season before? Why does a coach who has lead the best players in recent times to unprecedented success at Barcelona really deserve that much credit?

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World

Are Champions League outsider's odds an outstanding offer?

Whilst the majority of the Champions League debate focuses on who will win it, Viktoria Plzen are 10,000/1 outsiders to lift the most prestigious of Club Trophies. But should they really be that big, or even bigger, or are there teams who have even less of a chance than their odds suggest?

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