Do Man City look like a top-four team now?

Ollie Irish

3rd, August 2009


On paper, no one can argue that Man City now have a strong squad, and one that could be strengthened further before the summer transfer window slams shut. Witness:
Shay Given
Micah Richards, Kolo Touré, Richard Dunne, Wayne Bridge
Nigel de Jong, Stephen Ireland, Gareth Barry
Robinho, Emmanuel Adebayor, Carlos Tevez

Outside of the big four, you have to say that’s the most talanted first XI in the Premier League, although I stress again that a good team needs to be greater than the sum of its parts - and Sparky’s City 2.0 have won nothing yet.
City have improved their squad this summer more than any other Prem team, but are they now at the point where they can break into the top four? It’s a tough call to make. The ability is there, but so are the huge egos, and that’s where I see City – Hughes, in particular – struggling.
I’ve no doubt that City will destroy some teams at home this season, but I can see a pattern developing, where one good performance at Eastlands is followed by a disappointing defeat away from home. Mark Hughes is no Jose Mourinho, and I don’t see City’s gaffer commanding enough respect to get the best out of players like Robinho, Tevez and Adebayor. Indeed, the smart money says that Hughes will be forced out by Christmas, on the back of inconsistent form and the odd star player bleating in the tabloids.
City’s poor pre-season form has filled me with little confidence either, although I know not to read too much into that.
Do you think City look like a top-four team now? Vote below, leave a comment, have your say…

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  1. CiTyBlUe says:

    Its pathetic writing off Hughes before he is even given a chance to prove otherwise.
    Childish at best because we all know you anti Hughes brigade want him to fail no matter what.
    Im going to love it when Hughes does an Alex Ferguson and pushes us to the top.
    Theres a huge oil tanker full of humbles pies on its way for the scum.

  2. CiTyBlUe says:

    Its pathetic writing off Hughes before he is even given a chance to prove otherwise.
    Childish at best because we all know you anti Hughes brigade want him to fail no matter what.
    Im going to love it when Hughes does an Alex Ferguson and pushes us to the top.
    Theres a huge oil tanker full of humble pies on its way for the scum.

  3. Man U Fan says:

    City Blue u r a typical bitter blue fella. Like most City fans you believe you are chasing United!! This is clearly not the case as you still need to break into the top 4!!! then you can think about beating us and winning the league in 1 season (which will never happen may I add)
    May I also add that you’ll never win the league as Hughes will be sacked because the bitter blues hatred/jealousy of United will always outweigh any sort of title hopes and aspirations the Blue Ballbags have!!!!

  4. Ollie says:

    I like Hughes and want him to succeed actually. I just think he’ll be given no room at all to make mistakes with this expensive new side.

  5. Danny Blue says:

    You seem to forget about Kompany. In the current squad, he would be in the Central Defence position before Dunne. He is easily our best defender at the club along with Toure. People don’t seem to know that much about him and udnerrate him very much. He was probably the 3rd best player at the club last season behind only Ireland and Robinho. When his career got going he was ranked as the 30th best Defender, in the World! According to official rankings. He then had an injury but later joined City and was moved as a makeshift Defensive Midfielder. But next year he will be a centre back. If we sign Lescott, it wouldn’t suprise me if he [Lescott] played left back and acted as cover for Central Defender.

  6. City for Life says:

    You have hit the nail on the head my friend. On paper, our squad is knocking on the door of top four already. If we play to something like our potential I expect a hotly contested fight for place four (most likely against the Arse and/or Villa). Play below that, and we risk “under achieving” in the UEFA cup places. But if Hughes really pulls the rabbit out of the hat (and lets face it he now has a majority of his own players in the team, so why not?) then places three and upwards could well be up for grabs. Will we gel? Will we fall apart at the seams? Will rattles be thrown out of prams? Does a season of unprecedented glory await? Like the vast majority of blues, I’m just going to be realistic (a key survival tactic as a lifelong blue) sit back and enjoy the ride. Oh, and leave the carping and whining to our bitter and impoverished red neighbours (see above).

  7. trinder says:

    You’ve betrayed your ignorance, Ollie, by suggesting that the ‘smart money’ is on Hughes being forced out by Christmas (and by putting Dunne in your little XI instead of Onouha or Kompany, but we’ll let that go).
    You might like to imagine that Sheikh Mansour and Khaldoon are a Morratti/Berlusconi/Gil type owner and chairman but that chooses to ignore all the messages and signs they give. Again and again they repeat their faith in Mark Hughes, they’ve set a realistic target of sixth this season and they’ve allowed him to decide exactly who the club buys this summer.
    These two are no impatient, impulsive fools. Read a bit deeper than the tabloids and discover just how much they’ve done to the training ground, stadium and academy; about their long-term plans, their commitment to make the club as self-sufficient as possible; and about how Hughes is central to every part of that plan. Then decide who is spending smart money.

  8. Ollie says:

    @ Trinder: I’m not too proud to be corrected or informed, and certainly don’t claim to be an expert on City. But I think if results don’t go as planned, than Hughes will be out of Eastlands faster than you think. Anyway, we’ll see. I have no grudge against Sparky or City.

  9. Hawkeye says:

    Another way of looking at it is that for them to break into the top four, one of the existing top four have to drop out. There’s little benefit in an outside-top-four team improving their squad significantly if the top four do likewise. The question is really whether they look stronger than any one of the conventional “top four”.
    ManU and Chelsea look like safe bets to me for a top four slot. Could I see one of Liverpool and Arsenal drop to fifth? Yes – depending on who they buy in over the next couple of weeks and any injury problems early on.
    So possibly, there is an opening for another team to get in there – and I don’t see the likes of Everton or Villa being able to compete well enough with City to challenge them for it.
    My guess is that it could easily come down to the head-to-head results between the five teams. And I reckon that’s too close to call just now.

  10. kathmcp says:

    Smart analysis by Hawkeye.
    But have to agree with Man U Fan too – if Citeh spend less time being so narrow mindedly obsessed about beating United and more time focusing on the bigger picture of actually winning games regardless of who the competition is they might have a better chance.

  11. Sampsonscfc says:

    Man U Fan once again you have illustarted why the rest of the football world hate’s you and your “golry hunting can’t be bothered to support my local club, because it’s easier to just follow United as they buy yet another league title, smug, self satisfied twat”.
    City have more money now, you’ll just have to live with that. Your club has been hobbled by the huge debt that has been impossed on it by it’s gready owner.
    At least the money bags at City are putting the money into the club as an investment, not charging it the club as a debt.
    City won’t win the Premiership this season, a lack of a decent defence will see to that, but they will win it in the next 3 years.
    The Manure fans will then just jump ship to the blue half of the city, as so many of them did when the Russain took over at Chlesea.

  12. joe doody says:

    my friend thinks they have 500 billion

  13. joe doody says:

    NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO why would man city ever get in2 the top 4 it will never happen after all i am a man utd fan. my friend no names mentiond(adam gray aka adam gay) seems to think they will but he knows nothing.

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