A move which has been 4 years in the making has finally happened. Pep Guardiola has arrived at Manchester City. The club had tried to bring him in after his tenure with Barcelona but the Spanish coach preferred a move to German giants Bayern Munich instead. 3 seasons with Munich saw him leading the club to three consecutive Bundesliga titles, how will he fare in the Premier League?
Spare a thought for Manuel Pellegrini who did do a decent enough job during his time with City. In his three seasons with the club he led them to two League Cup trophies and a Premier League title in 2013/14. Despite only managing a 4th place finish in the league last season, City did manage to make it into the Semifinals of the Champions League.
The expectations with the arrival of Guardiola are pretty high. The club are thought to be one of the favorites for the Champions League. The realistic goal though will be to challenge for the title and maybe another appearance in the semifinals of the Champions League.
Manchester City 2016-17 Season Preview
In this four seasons with Barcelona, Guardiola led them to the La Liga title a total of three times. The Catalan giants also managed to secure the Champions League twice during that time. Despite never winning a Champions League title with Bayern Munich he did help them to three consecutive Bundesliga titles.
While it’s true Guardiola is one of the greatest modern day managers in the game one should also take notice of the fact that he inherited two strong squads at both Barca and Bayern. At City, Guardiola has a rebuilding task at hand. The summer has witnessed as many as 8 new signings joining their squad.
Guardiola would have taken notice of how Sunderland pushed them in their 2-1 opening day win.Even a club that has been barely surviving relegation in the past three seasons pushed his star studded line-up to the limit.
One has the feel that a few more signings are on their way to City. Though Guardiola is expected to deliver instant results he should be given the time to adapt to the Premier League which is a completely different ball game to their other European Leagues. It will be a tight race to the title this season and City certainly are one of the favorites to make it to the top in the end.
One player who seems to have fallen out of favor at City is England No.1 Joe Hart. Guardiola has made his intentions clear picking William Caballero ahead of Hart in both of their games this season. Even Caballero’s spot maybe under threat with City rumored to be making a move for Barcelona’s Claudio Bravo.
Vincent Kompany will have a new partner in defense when he returns from injury. John Stones is one of England’s brightest young stars and will be relishing the opportunity to work under Guardiola. Bacary Sagna and Gael Clichy should continue on as the first choice right and left backs respectively.
City have arguably the best midfield unit in the league. Guardiola has in Kevin De Bryune someone around whom he can build a team. The likes of David Silva, Raheem Sterling, Gundogan and Fernandinho will all have crucial roles to play this season. The future of Yaya Toure is a mystery though. The 33 year old has had a couple average seasons in the league and may well have to settle for a bit part role his season.
One player who will not be bothered by all the changes at the club will be Sergio Aguero. The Argentine international has been City’s best players over the last few years. Coming to this season he will have competition from two new signings Leroy Sane and Nolito but is still expected to be their main striker. Another striker who’ll be looking for a breakthrough will be 19 year old Kelechi Iheanacho.
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Manchester City 2016-17 Season Prediction
Unlike most teams in the league, City are already two games into their 2016-17 campaign. Guardiola’s first Premier League game in charge of City saw his side having to rely on a own goal to pick up a narrow 2-1 win against Sunderland. His second game in charge saw a much better performance from the club as they thumped Romanian Club Steaua Bucuresti 5-0 in a Champions League play-off game.
Coming back to the Premier League, City will visit Stoke on Saturday after which they’ll face West Ham, Manchester United and Bournemouth. It’s a certainly a testing set of fixtures for Guardiola but will get an idea of Premier League by the end of it.
We expect the Citizens to have a slow start to the season. They will be in and around the top 4 at Christmas. After the turn of the year City should string together a good run of results that’ll ultimately help them clinch the title by a margin of 3-5 points. The Europe it will be a second consecutive Champions League semifinal appearance and nothing more.
Verdict: – 1st Place
Player to Watch – Manchester City 2016-17
If there is one player Manchester City could always count on it’s Sergio Aguero. From his last minute goal to clinch the 2011/12 league title to his hat-trick against Steaua Bucuresti on Wednesday, Aguero has been City’s focal point for the past 5-6 seasons. At 28 yrs old the striker is in the prime of his career and will be looking to carrying on his form with City. He scored of total of 29 goals in all competitions last season and has been City’s top scorer in their past five campaigns.
More of the same can be expected from Aguero and he is the front runner for the Golden Boot.
Betting Tips – Manchester City 2016-17
1. Premier League Champions – 3.30 (888 Sport)
Since the turn of the decade the Premier League has been competitive each and every season apart from Manchester United’s 2012/13 triumph. This season will prove no different with almost 5-6 teams looking a possible contender for the title. Manchester City have been the most consistent team over the last 6 years never falling out of the Top 4.
They start as one of the front runners once again. While it’s not a given that they’ll win the title at this point they look the most likely do so. Not a bet i would be making but the odds are pretty decent to gamble on.
2. Relegation – 1501.00 (Betfair)
I wouldn’t do that if i were you.
3. Manchester City 2016-17 Top Scorer
Sergio Aguero – 1.20 (Betvictor)
Kelechi Iheanacho – 11.00 (Betvictor)
Nolito – 17.00 (Betvictor)
Kevin De Bryune – 26.00 (Betvictor)
Sergio Aguero all the way. The striker has scored more than 25 goals in 4 of his last 5 seasons with City. Aguero is also our pick to win the Golden Boot his year and his odds to do so stands at 4.35 (188 Bet).
4. Top 4 Finish – 1.20 (Bet 365)
5. PFA Player of the Year – Kevin De Bryune (21.00 – Paddypower)
The Belgian International was impressive in his first season with City that saw him scoring 17 goals and assisting a further 9 in all competitions. We are picking Kevin De Bryune to have his breakout season in the Premier League this campaign and is also a favorite to top the league’s assists’ chart. Aguero is the favorite as per the bookies and it wouldn’t be a bad bet either. Aguero – 10.00 (Coral).
6. Highest Scoring Team – 2.75 (Betvictor)
The odds are decent considering the fact that they have topped the scoring charts in four out of the last five seasons. We won’t be backing City on this one as we see a number of other teams equally adept in scoring this season.
7. Most League Assists – De Bryune – 5.00 (888 Sport)
8. LMA Manager of the Year – Pep Guardiola – 4.00 (Betvictor)
The bookies have made him the favorite to bag this award and we are also picking him as the favorite.
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Transfers In – Manchester City 2016-17
|Fee – €
|Celta de Vigo
Manchester City – 2015/16 Stats