Where would you rank this Man City side now?

adexkola

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Is this Liverpool team better than all of Ferguson’s teams, the Arsenal of the first five years of the century? Chelsea’s title winning teams under Mourinho and Ancelotti? Because they finished just a point below this City team (while negotiating far more difficult Champions League ties) and with a points total that eclipses any of those aforementioned teams.

If the answer is no, then you have to acknowledge that the league is simply nowhere near as challenging as in previous eras - points are obviously far easier to come by.

The Van Dijk vs Vidic stats, a decade apart, told you all you need to know; that season United were European champions and retained the league, yet teams clearly competed, worked the defence and offered a genuine threat - unlike the pathetic efforts City and Liverpool are up against now.

I’d love to see Pep and Klopp up against the likes of Pulis, Allardyce and Blackburn-era Hughes, who played to their own strengths and took the big clubs to war, rather than gimps like Eddie Howe who lube themselves up for a beating by trying to play ‘good’ football with players who simply cannot do it.
:lol: they'd beat the brakes off those teams.
 

andyox

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This thread has motivated me to try to analyse some of the differences between the league now compared to in previous eras of great teams, because I think we almost all accept (statistically counter-intuitively) that the 1999 United side that accumulated 79 points was a greater team than the City team of last season (100 points) or this season (98 points). It's statistically clear that the gap in quality between the top 6 and bottom 6 is greater than it's ever been in terms of the share of points. However, what's interesting about that is that at the same time, the gap between top and bottom in terms of revenue is actually slightly narrowing. I would have expected that the narrower the revenue share, the narrower the points share, but that's not the case.

Accurate revenue data is quite hard to find on a club by club basis, the earliest full set I can find is from the 2011-12 season, when United had the highest revenue at £320m, about 6 times higher than Wigan, who had the league's lowest revenue at £53m. In terms of points share, that season the top 6 earned 446 points, about 2.1 times more points than the bottom 6 earned (210 points). The most recent full revenue set I can find is from the 2016-17 season, when United had the highest revenue at £581m, about 5 times higher than Hull, who had the league's lowest revenue at £117m. In terms of points share, that season the top 6 earned 477 points, about 2.3 times more points than the bottom 6 earned (207 points). So the revenue gap has shrunk between 2012 and 2017, but the points gap has grown.

This season's revenue data obviously isn't available yet, but we can already see that this season the top 6 earned 474 points, about 2.5 times more points than the bottom 6 earned (191 points). So that points share gap seems to be continuing to rise, even since 2017. And it's certainly a lot higher than in the 1998-99 season (the season of the greatest PL side), when the top 6 earned 411 points, only 1.8 times more points than the bottom 6 earned (226 points).

It'd be interesting to try to explain the disconnect in terms of revenue share vs points share since 2012. I guess on the one hand it's good to know that the Premier League's overall revenue model, particularly the equitable broadcast revenue share is managing to keep things more even than in other leagues, although that is set to change a little bit (for the worse) with the new calculation for how international broadcast revenue is shared. But I think it's bad for the league in general, in a competitive sense, that the points share gap between top and bottom is growing. The Premier League loves to market itself on the notion than anybody can beat anybody, but it seems like that marketing spiel is drifting further and further away from reality.

So why are the top clubs earning proportionally more points? This is all conjecture on my part, but I'd suggest a few things:
1) Year on year accumulation of greater revenue: this has allowed the top clubs to continually spend more each year to recruit the best players, and over time that has meant that the gap in quality has just continued to grow (and will continue to grow). This trend is made worse when the identity of the top 6 is more set in stone, as it appears now;
2) Squad sizes: over the years, bench size has gradually increased, which has allowed the top clubs to maintain larger squads because it's possible to keep more players happy, more of the time when there's more spots available in the matchday squad. Greater revenue obviously also allows the top clubs to pay the wages of a larger squad;
3) The lure of the Champions League: this is much more conjecture, but it feels like the top players these days are much more focused on playing in the CL every year, and this has led to a stockpiling of the top players at the top clubs. Top players simply won't accept playing for a long period of time in a non-CL team. You see top players using this explanation for a move quite regularly (e.g. Zaha's recent comments about potentially moving on from Palace).

And finally, does any of this matter for a comparison between e.g. United's 1999 team vs City's 2018 or 2019 team? I think it's fair to say that it was more challenging to win the league in 1999 because the quality gap between the top and the bottom teams was smaller, which makes United's treble all the more remarkable. But I don't think it's possible to say with any certainty whether United's 1999 team would beat City's 2019 team, and nor does it really matter. Different era, different game, both great teams. But United's 1999 team achieved more, which is why they are rightly considered the greater team.
 

BridgeBanter

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United 99 and 08 will always be top.

Current City edge just ahead of 04/05 Chelsea but as both were bankrolled by crazy investment and they would never have acheived it themselves then they dont count anyway.

Id put Leicester second after our two Champions League winning seasons to be honest.
City is clearly a better team than that Leicester team.
 

andyox

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City is clearly a better team than that Leicester team.
And, admittedly on a lesser scale to Chelsea/City's investment, that Leicester team also broke FFP. Which dilutes the romance, somewhat.
 

jackwanson

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Are you on a wind-up? How on earth can winning the PL again be "meaningless?"

If your top priority is for us to buy Mane, Neymar, and half the Ajax team, then I think you're in for a very disappointing summer.
Sorry. Did not clarify enough. Winning the league is an incredible accomplishment and City having done it back to back is even more amazing. What I'm trying to say is that Citys goal is to become a top level global brand. I think everyone at City want to eventually reach the levels of Madrid/Barca. The only way to do that is to win the CL. It dont matter what some posters on a forum think in regards to PL being better than CL. The CL winner is the most prestigious. This cannot be denied. That football fan in Italy can hardly tell why PL is > than Bundesligs, that football fan in Paris barely knows the history of Leeds or United or English league rivalries. What they know is Champions League. 3x as many people watch the Champions League Final as the American Superbowl. That's how big the CL final is. City being in the CL final give exposure we abosutely need to get to that next step. If we win the PL for the next 3 years and get destroyed by say Madrid, Barca, and a random German team in the Round of 16 or something. That will be utterly humiliating. That's why I said City will just be viewed as a Luxury Version of PSG until a CL Semi or Final is reached.
 

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Of the Premier League era?

Better than Uniteds treble side or 06-09 side? Above Mourinho's 04-06 Chelsea side? Better than the invincibles?
They are like we were under Fergie. They will keep improving so we have a lot of catching up.
 

Welby5

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Current City edge just ahead of 04/05 Chelsea but as both were bankrolled by crazy investment and they would never have acheived it themselves then they dont count anyway
Oh dear! These kinds of facts are easy to find but it comes from Football365.com. Last 5 seasons - Chelsea's bussiness model is far more reliant on player sales than any other major English club. They've made £337 miillion and only Spurs come anywhere near with £192 million. Chelsea are number 1 in net profit of £113 million, which is 73 million more than Spurs, the next top 6 club. Chelsea have sold players for almost twice as much as Utd. In the 2014/15 season Chelsea made £111 million profit on transfers and won the title. I didn't see this on the site, but i've read elsewhere that was the only time a club won the Premiership with a net transfer profit that season.
 

MVBDX

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We had a 100 pt season under Mou as well, but I'd never call that our best season or best team, the thing is that as long as you can't show the same character in Europe, you've only won another campaign.
 

sincher

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Unfortunately and annoyingly I cannot remember a better team and that includes all our big winning sides. Maybe our 99 side had just a bit more gusto but from a footballing POV, this City team are very, very good.
 

Rob

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Squad wise they are 1st, but they need a CL trophy before they match up to your 99 and 2008 sides historically.
 

Robertd0803

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Oh dear! These kinds of facts are easy to find but it comes from Football365.com. Last 5 seasons - Chelsea's bussiness model is far more reliant on player sales than any other major English club. They've made £337 miillion and only Spurs come anywhere near with £192 million. Chelsea are number 1 in net profit of £113 million, which is 73 million more than Spurs, the next top 6 club. Chelsea have sold players for almost twice as much as Utd. In the 2014/15 season Chelsea made £111 million profit on transfers and won the title. I didn't see this on the site, but i've read elsewhere that was the only time a club won the Premiership with a net transfer profit that season.
Thats last 5 seasons though. I was saying that its pretty unlikely Chelsea would have won the league in 04/05 without Abromavichs takeover to begin with.
 

Untd55

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I don't think they are better than any of the best teams in the past: Arsenal, Chelsea, Manutd.

The reason why I think this is because in Premier League history there has only been one team (Chelsea) that has got 95 points. Suddenly, we have two teams in a single season getting over 95 points on top of a record-breaking points total last season.

Still a great achievement, but I think it is evident that something has changed in the league. I think that might be that teams are just not as good at defending anymore since they don't sit back anywhere near as much, and I think there has also been a drop in physicality.
 

dogwithabone

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Possibly just on a par with our very best sids of the PL era but I wouldn’t say they’re quite as good as the dominant Liverpool team of late 70’s and early 80’s and teams like the great Forest side under Clough. Both of those would regularly go on 20-25 game unbeaten runs, scoring for fun and hardly conceding.

City execute it superbly well but they are very one dimensional and I think the three sides above had a bit more variety and were a bit less mechanical.
 

BalanceUnAutreJoint

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They are better than every single Chelsea or Arsenal side in history
League wise they obviously are even better than any side managed by SAF but they're not an overall better side with the way they're playing in cup competitions, CL especially.

So I'd say 1999 United > 2008 United > 2017/18 City > 2018/19 City > Any other PL side in history
 

Welby5

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Thats last 5 seasons though. I was saying that its pretty unlikely Chelsea would have won the league in 04/05 without Abromavichs takeover to begin with.
Fair enough. But the spending was a long time ago now and along the way they wasted crap loads on stupid signings like Sheva & Torres, to name just a few. In all of Chelsea's title winning teams, the teams were actually made up from well judged, great value for money signings. We're now once again making lots of poor signings but too few high quality ones which is showing by results and performances. But even so, the club hasa rich owner who could afford to and did spend a lot. Isn't an owner like RA better than the Glaziers who are only there to make money for themselves? Or the old Chelsea owners in the 70's who sold the club down the river which started a decline that took 20 years and the arrival of Mathew Harding to turn around. Also, unlike City, at least Chelsea have been open and fair about their incomes and spending,
 

andyox

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Fair enough. But the spending was a long time ago now and along the way they wasted crap loads on stupid signings like Sheva & Torres, to name just a few. In all of Chelsea's title winning teams, the teams were actually made up from well judged, great value for money signings. We're now once again making lots of poor signings but too few high quality ones which is showing by results and performances. But even so, the club hasa rich owner who could afford to and did spend a lot. Isn't an owner like RA better than the Glaziers who are only there to make money for themselves? Or the old Chelsea owners in the 70's who sold the club down the river which started a decline that took 20 years and the arrival of Mathew Harding to turn around. Also, unlike City, at least Chelsea have been open and fair about their incomes and spending,
That's slightly disingenuous though, isn't it. The difference between City and Chelsea's spending is that Chelsea's spending occurred prior to UEFA FFP, while City's occurred during UEFA FFP. Chelsea didn't break any rules on spending because there were no rules in place.

And of course, once Roman was done with his "open and fair" spending, he was then one of the prime movers in the design and implementation of UEFA FFP, which miraculously helped to lift the drawbridge up on any other club spending in the same way that he had. "It's mainly the owners that asked us to do something. Roman Abramovich, Silvio Berlusconi at AC Milan and Massimo Moratti at Inter," Platini said. "They do not want to fork out any more...I have met with Abramovich, who is a football person and passionate about the game. He said that we must do something about this."

There may well be a moral high-ground in all of this. I'm not sure Chelsea are sitting on it though.
 

Zlatattack

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One of the best sides, but not as good as the 1999 side or the 08 side. They've not won the CL and the PL at the same time.
 

Arthur1

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Of the Premier League era?

Better than Uniteds treble side or 06-09 side? Above Mourinho's 04-06 Chelsea side? Better than the invincibles?
By far the best side of the Premier League era. Anyone bringing up the "oh but they didn't win the CL as well" is clutching at straws IMO.

The PL now is the same competition as it was in 99. Look at the difference in the number of goals city scored, their winning runs, points totals etc, compared to united in 99 and 08. Worlds apart. A league campaign is the best indicator of a side's quality, as it looks at consistency, while minimising the influence of "luck".

CL, while a glamorous competition, is still a knock-out format. All it takes is one fluke, and a team progresses/is knocked out (see spurs' third goal at Etihad). Indeed, a team can win the whole thing despite not being the best side (Pool in 05).

So, to use city's shortcomings in the CL as a means of placing them below united's past sides is a rather petty argument given the clear gulf in class in the PL.
 

tomaldinho1

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I'd have them behind our '99 and '08 teams and probably the Arsenal invincibles - purely because that is the ultimate domestic achievement in my eyes. I get they've amassed a ridiculous points total but there's something about having the concentration and resilience to go a whole season unbeaten that is hugely impressive.

They're now at a stage where it's all about the CL, back to back PL titles is impressive even when you factor in the spending but without the CL addition they can never (at least in my eyes) be considered as the best.
 

CognitiveNeuro

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This is gonna be a bit "controversial" but I'm being objective here. This is a United forum after all.
This City side is better than any Man Utd side. I think if they both played, they would handily beat the best United side.

98 and 100 points in two seasons is just laughably ridiculous. This is with a league of 4 European finalists as well and holding off Champions League finalists Liverpool with 97 points in a neck to neck race.

The sides in Europe are much better now than it was back then and if Guardiola wanted, he could have played full strength at Spurs and gone for the CL.
But Liverpool were pushing them all the way and prioritized the EPL.
 

Klopper76

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I'd say better than the Chelsea & Arsenal sides. That invincible season is over rated any way.

There's something special about winning the Premier League & the Champions League in the same season though. United's treble side and the 07-08 season gives them the edge imo.

Ronaldo from 07-08 was better than anything City currently have, and Ferdinand & Vidic were a formidable CB pairing.
 

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Sorry. Did not clarify enough. Winning the league is an incredible accomplishment and City having done it back to back is even more amazing. What I'm trying to say is that Citys goal is to become a top level global brand. I think everyone at City want to eventually reach the levels of Madrid/Barca. The only way to do that is to win the CL. It dont matter what some posters on a forum think in regards to PL being better than CL. The CL winner is the most prestigious. This cannot be denied. That football fan in Italy can hardly tell why PL is > than Bundesligs, that football fan in Paris barely knows the history of Leeds or United or English league rivalries. What they know is Champions League. 3x as many people watch the Champions League Final as the American Superbowl. That's how big the CL final is. City being in the CL final give exposure we abosutely need to get to that next step. If we win the PL for the next 3 years and get destroyed by say Madrid, Barca, and a random German team in the Round of 16 or something. That will be utterly humiliating. That's why I said City will just be viewed as a Luxury Version of PSG until a CL Semi or Final is reached.
You’ve got a short memory.
We were timid vs Real in CLSF in Pellegrini’s last season but we were definitely there!
 

Eire Red United

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This is gonna be a bit "controversial" but I'm being objective here. This is a United forum after all.
This City side is better than any Man Utd side. I think if they both played, they would handily beat the best United side.

98 and 100 points in two seasons is just laughably ridiculous. This is with a league of 4 European finalists as well and holding off Champions League finalists Liverpool with 97 points in a neck to neck race.

The sides in Europe are much better now than it was back then and if Guardiola wanted, he could have played full strength at Spurs and gone for the CL.
But Liverpool were pushing them all the way and prioritized the EPL.
That last bit is rubbish. Pep has been brought in with a number one objective of winning the CL.
 

adexkola

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That last bit is rubbish. Pep has been brought in with a number one objective of winning the CL.
From his team selections, it's obvious what the priority was. He would have rested everyone for the CL with the point gap Liverpool had over City a while ago, if his number 1 objective was the CL.
 

ExecutionerWasp001

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It's obviously hard to quantify but you have to take into account the ''Utd factor'' when comparing our great teams to this City side & others. Teams/Players usually raise their game when playing against Utd. We are the biggest club in the league & are the most prized scalp for everybody. It was an incredible achievement by Utd to win 13/20 titles when you take this into account. City don't seem to face this kind of pressure week in week out. The majority of bottom half PL teams roll over & have their bellies tickled .
 

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I hate to say but they're the best of all time. Drop them in any PL season and they win the league. Head to head they're tactically way ahead of the United/Chelsea/Arsenal teams you're comparing them to. They'd simply over run the possession against any of those teams.

feck knows how they've managed to fluff the CL twice because they've been the best in Europe for 2 seasons now.
Yup, still rate them over 99 United
 

Theonas

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It's obviously hard to quantify but you have to take into account the ''Utd factor'' when comparing our great teams to this City side & others. Teams/Players usually raise their game when playing against Utd. We are the biggest club in the league & are the most prized scalp for everybody. It was an incredible achievement by Utd to win 13/20 titles when you take this into account. City don't seem to face this kind of pressure week in week out. The majority of bottom half PL teams roll over & have their bellies tickled .
Fans of other teams used to say the exact same thing about us. I remember so many teams especially, those who had our former players managers being accused of rolling over against us because Fergie was their "boss". The CL is the only legitimate argument that this City team falls short against, they are ahead in everything else.
 

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In the long list of clubs which have never won the Champions League.
 

Tostao_80

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I'd have them behind our '99 and '08 teams and probably the Arsenal invincibles - purely because that is the ultimate domestic achievement in my eyes. I get they've amassed a ridiculous points total but there's something about having the concentration and resilience to go a whole season unbeaten that is hugely impressive.

They're now at a stage where it's all about the CL, back to back PL titles is impressive even when you factor in the spending but without the CL addition they can never (at least in my eyes) be considered as the best.
How on earth is Arsenal's unbeaten 1 season team with only 90 (1?) points better than a team that wins 2 leagues on the bounce, accumulating 198 points in the process? Achievement wise it's not even comparable.
Dominance on the pitch again, it's not even comparable. City comfortably.
 

tomaldinho1

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How on earth is Arsenal's unbeaten 1 season team with only 90 (1?) points better than a team that wins 2 leagues on the bounce, accumulating 198 points in the process? Achievement wise it's not even comparable.
Dominance on the pitch again, it's not even comparable. City comfortably.
Well, as I said, because there's something very special about going a whole season unbeaten. Something this City side have been unable to do. I get you have your opinion but just because you're incredulous it doesn't change mine.
 

Tostao_80

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Well, as I said, because there's something very special about going a whole season unbeaten. Something this City side have been unable to do. I get you have your opinion but just because you're incredulous it doesn't change mine.
It was indeed a special achievement. Would you still put them above City if City were to win another title next year?
 

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On a serious note all the eras are too difficult to compare. One of the greatest imo.

Arsneal's invincibles are the most ovverated side in history. They got like 12 or 13 draws and only remained undefeated because of that Pires dive in their last game of the season. City score far more, conceded less (This season, conceded one more last season), play better football and actually might win 4 trophies in one season.

EVen Mou's Chelsea are superior to the invincibles seeing as they actually could retain the league, got more points and had 1 losss.

Our United team from 07 - 09 is probably the best overall, but I think City would beat us.
 

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Is this Liverpool team better than all of Ferguson’s teams, the Arsenal of the first five years of the century? Chelsea’s title winning teams under Mourinho and Ancelotti? Because they finished just a point below this City team (while negotiating far more difficult Champions League ties) and with a points total that eclipses any of those aforementioned teams.
The answers are No, Yes, Equal, Better, and medical sports science
 

tomaldinho1

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It was indeed a special achievement. Would you still put them above City if City were to win another title next year?
That's tough, probably would have to if they do three on the bounce. Unbeaten all season is a joke though, if you think how good City are and they couldn't do it
 

CognitiveNeuro

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That last bit is rubbish. Pep has been brought in with a number one objective of winning the CL.
Who told you that? the newspapers? He rested players in the CL games specifically to play his strongest in the EPL. He persistently has said his objective is to win the EPL over the CL.
 

wattsy7

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Behind the two United teams but better than the Invincibles and Chelsea, just. Come back to me when they’ve won the treble and been in consecutive champions league finals.

The premier league was stronger in the late nineties & noughties compared to now. Whilst I think this Man City would’ve won titles, there’s absolutely no chance they and Liverpool would’ve been able to achieve their incredible points tallies during that time. Teams who finished around 15th/16th back then would finish in the top 10 in the league now, that’s how much the level of the bottom half of the premier league has dropped.
 
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soaphroniscuss

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They are more reliable than any Utd side but their performance peak is lower than Man Utd 2008 - 2009, Chelsea 2005-2006 and possibly Man Utd 1999 - 2001.