Last time out, City slumped to a disappointing defeat to Newcastle United in the Premier League. Despite failing to beat Leicester City, Liverpool still capitalised on City’s loss by drawing against the Foxes and extending their lead to 5 points at the top of the table.
So where do recent events leave City’s hopes of a quadruple? Read on to find out.
When Manchester City thumped League One Burton Albion 10-0 over two legs in the League Cup semi-final, the club’s odds of winning an unprecedented quadruples shortened in the sports betting.
Chelsea are City’s opponents in the League Cup final after they triumphed over Tottenham on penalties in the semi-final. Despite suffering an incredible drop off in form in recent weeks, Chelsea were the first club to beat Pep Guardiola’s Citizens this season – 2-0 at Stamford Bridge in December.
Because of this, City will need to be wary of Chelsea in the League Cup Final, but we can still be confident of a City win. A 4-0 loss to Bournemouth in midweek marked Chelsea’s heaviest Premier League defeat in 23 years. If the current malaise continues at Stamford Bridge, City should canter to success at Wembley.
This season’s FA Cup is opening up nicely for some of the bigger sides left in the competition. A series of upsets in the earlier rounds have cleared the route to the final for the likes of City, and unfortunately Manchester United.
After scoring a total of 12 unanswered goals in the past 2 rounds, City will be confident of blowing away their fifth round opponents – Middlesbrough or Newport County. That would take City into the sixth round with the final in sight.
Cup draws have been nothing but kind to City this season, and arguably last season as well. Struggling Bundesliga side Schalke are City’s opponents in the Round of 16 in Europe – possibly the easiest tie Guardiola could have hoped for.
Some of Europe’s other big clubs have not been so lucky in the draw. Manchester United have been drawn against PSG and Liverpool will face off against Bayern Munich. These ties will see 2 of City’s closest rivals exit the tournament before the quarter-finals.
If another favourable draw comes City’s way in the quarter-finals then momentum could build to see them claim a first European title in the era of mega investment.
Retaining a league title is often harder than winning one in the first place. City have proved this since the investment of Sheikh Mansour, winning 2 Premier League titles without retaining them. Currently it looks like City will fail to retain their crown for the third time in the Sheikh Mansour era.
Despite being given chance after chance by Liverpool, City have become their own worst enemies in their Premier League defence. Losses to Crystal Palace and Newcastle United have been catastrophic for Pep Guardiola’s team.
Luckily for City, league leaders Liverpool are perhaps the biggest bottlers in Premier League history. Although we must give an honorary mention to Kevin Keegan’s Newcastle United side of the mid-90’s.
Twice in recent years the Anfield club have been in pole position to pip a Manchester club to the Premier League title, and twice they have bottled it. In Liverpool’s most recent game – a 1-1 draw at home to Leicester – there was a palpable tension in the air. There is a significant chance of implosion down the M62, which City could be poised to capitalise on.
Who City will rely on for a quadruple
Pep Guardiola – The Catalan manager is a serial winner, have no doubts about that. Guardiola has won league titles in 3 different countries and has seen off bigger and better rivals than Liverpool.
Sergio Aguero – The Argentine highlighted his importance to the club with his magnificent goal in the win against Liverpool. We will need further moments of brilliance from Aguero to win the quadruple.
Will City win the quadruple?
Possibly. That’s the best we can say. Winning the FA Cup and the League Cup could be mere formalities for this supremely talented team. European glory however will be trickier, City will have to overcome some of the best sides on the continent, but they do have the ability to do that.
The Premier League seems to be the longest shot for Guardiola’s team at the moment. But it’s worth remembering that Liverpool still have to play Manchester United, Tottenham and Chelsea.
Add that to their dedication to self-sabotage and it’s not a stretch to see City winning the Premier League this season.