They say the hardest thing about been at the top, is staying there. I am sure Manchester City got a full dose of that reality check this just-concluded season.
Two back to back seasons of almost perfection must have clouded their eyes to think they had a perfect team. How do you go from a 100 points; a 19 points advantage to 98 points and just 1 point advantage. The signs were ominous; a potential decline was around the corner which has now led to an 18 points deficit on Champions Liverpool.
Manchester City needs a rejig, not a complete overhaul but some fine-tuning to make the machine run full throttle. The squad is still very strong but in my estimation, it’s lacking three critical signings.
Replacing Vincent Kompany
First and foremost the failure to replace departing captain, Vincent Kompany; needs to be addressed now. There are worthy candidates around depending on how much financial muscle the Etihad outfit decides to exert.
The likes of Nathan Ake, Koulibaly, David Alaba have all been linked with a switch to Manchester City. The truth is all three fit perfectly to join the City backline as a partner to Aymeric Laporte. So cutting the long story short, Man City needs to bring in a centre back.
Next, a left-back; this depends on what Pep makes of Benjamin Mendy’s injury-ravaged Man City Career and Zinchenko in the long term. For Ukraine, Zinchenko plays in midfield, with all the control City has; his positioning is not entirely at left back.
However, the point here is a specialist in the position is critical. Interestingly, David Alaba is linked with a move to the Etihad and he ticks that box. Talk about killing 2 birds with 1 stone.
Replacing Leroy Sane
Phil Foden is designated as the heir apparent to David Silva; so that leaves one position still to fill. The departure of Leroy Sane to Bayern Munich means Manchester City a very critical component in their engine. Sane’s numbers and overall quality have to be replaced.
I am sure Pep is already considering this; already there is talk of Ferran Torres from Valencia. At 20, an interesting talent; what better way to develop your game than working with one of the greatest managers of his generation.
With at least three signings from the choice of Nathan Ake, Kalidou Koulibaly, David Alaba, and Ferran Torres; Manchester City can go a long way in bridging the gap next season.
Agree Man City fans?