If there is anyone who deserves credits for Manchester City’s centurions it is Pep Guardiola. Josep Guardiola a.k.a. Pep Guardiola joined Manchester City after stunning spell filled with trophies at Bayern Munich. His managerial role at Man City was highly anticipated by English Media. Some great Football experts and pundits believed that Pep’s tiki-taka style of football is not suitable for Premier League.
In his first season Pep Guardiola finished 3rd with Manchester City in the Premier League. His first season was so terrible and he knew he needed to bring new lads. He spent 317.50 million euros (source : transfrmarket) on buying players and earned 95.6 million euros by selling players. His signings mostly included defenders as he needed to bring new full backs to replace old defenders by young ones. He was strict after failing to win any trophy in his first season. He added Ederson, Mendy, Walker, Danilo and Bernardo Silva in his squad.
Man City started season their 2017/18 campaign against Brighton at home. This time they looked different team. Team’s average age was less as compared to last season and they were tireless and made better movements off the ball which Pep demands. They drew their second match against Everton (which has filled with drama). After that match there was no looking back for Pep Guardiola’s Man City they went on to win 18 Premier League matches consecutively (a new premier league record). Kevin De Bruyne and David Silva both were performing flawlessly in their play-making role.
That run of 18 wins included 5-0 victory over Liverpool, 6-0 win against Watford, a 5-0 trashing of Crystal Palace, a 9 goal thriller against Stoke which ended 7-2 and also a win at Old Trafford against their bitter rivals Manchester United. It seemed that this Pep Guardiola’s team is unbeatable they will finish undefeated this season, they got defeated 4-3 by Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool.
Arguably, it was the match of the season which had everything in it. David Silva remained absent in middle of the season due to his personal reasons. With David Silva gone, Kevin De Bruyne had to do play-making alone and he did that very well he provided 16 assists and scored 8 goals, most of his goals and assists came against big teams. He was a contender to win PFA player of season, unfortunately he lost it to a better compatriot Mohammed Salah who scored 32 goals and provided 10 assists.
Times came when their first team players (Mendy, Jesus, Kompany, Aguero, Sane) were injured. Despite having injured players they were performing and winning consistently. After seeing vulnerability among his center backs he decided to spend in Winter Transfer window and spent 65 million euros and brought a new left footed center back Aymeric Laporte. Stats prove that his transfer was pivotal. After he was bought,
-Manchester City with Laporte: Played 9 and won all 9.
-Manchester City without Laporte: Played 8, Won 4, Drawn 2 and Lost 2.
Laporte is also going to play integral part in Manchester City’s squad next season.
Manchester City continued their consistency throughout the season, their discipline to play tiki-taka football, the hard work and desire to win matches were all key to their Premier League success. City finished their Premier League season with 100 points, 32 wins and 106 goals, which is now a league record.
Even though Citizens didn’t had any success in Europe under Pep(the reason for which he was brought in), but the strength and quality of current squad implies that their European glory days wouldn’t be too far for the grab.