Ever since being acquired by the Abu Dhabi United Group back in 2008, Manchester City have joined the elite rank of English and European clubs and have started having serious aspirations when it comes to winning both the domestic and the European leagues and tournaments.
The domestic competitions have been fairly kind to the new and reformed Manchester City as they managed to grab the Premiership titles in 2011/12 and 2013/14 seasons and finish in the very top of the table every year since the new owners came to the Etihad. The team have also captured the FA Cup in 2010/11, League Cup in 2013/14 and 16 as well as the Community Shield in 2012, but have still not succeeded in making a real impact on any of the European Leagues.
This is of course not to say that the citizens can’t compete on the European level, but due to the luck of the draw and some poor performances, titles and even finals appearances have somehow eluded the mighty squad for many years now. The new season is now well underway, and Manchester City seem more determined to win big than ever.
The question everyone is probably asking themselves at the moment is whether Manchester City have what it takes to finally climb to top of Europe and win the prestigious Champions League title.
The Group Stages
Manchester City have had some unlucky draws in the past and this season they have once again drawn Barcelona as the top seed of their group, thanks to falling well behind Leicester City in last season’s Premiership.
That said, City opened the CL very strong, by winning 4:0 against Monchengladbach in their first match, with Sergio Aguero scoring a hat trick. Seeing that the other team in the group is Celtic, who have lost to Barcelona in their opener by 7:0, the only real question is whether City can win the group or come second to Barcelona, which will be answered after their two matches later in the season.
Be as it may, Manchester City are very likely to advance past the group stage, and if one is to judge by their performances so far this season, we can hardly think of a team who would be heavy favorites against them until the very end. Drawing Barcelona may actually turn out to be a good thing as beating the Catalonian giant would certainly give them wings, while a loss at Camp Nou would surely not be a disaster.
An Unlikely Champion?
Manchester City have been playing top notch football for many seasons now, with major starts both in their squad and on the bench. The question is, why are they unable to take home the Champions League trophy season after season and the answer to this questions likely lies in the fact there are just so many strong sides in Europe nowadays.
With the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich lurking behind every corner in the elite competition, how can other teams really ever hope to win it?! Yet, City have really started off strong this season and the 9/1 being offered with major bookies at the moment is certainly great value, when we consider just how strong of a team we are talking about. For comparison, Barcelona are priced 3/1 to win the competition and there is simply no chance that realistically speaking they are 3 times more likely to win it.
While City may not be the favourites to take the Champions League title, at the 9/1 odds they simply have to be great value and the bookies are absolutely underestimating Aguero and the lads.