Football Season Guide

Manchester City


Leroy Sane(mid) (Schalke), Gabriel Jesus(att) (Palmeiras), Ilkay Gundogan(mid) (Borussia Dortmund), Nolito(mid) (Celta Vigo), Oleksandr Zinchenko(mid) (Ufa), Aaron Mooy(mid) (Melbourne City), Marlos Moreno(mid) (Atletico Nacional), Bruno Zuculini(mid) (AEK Athens - End of Loan), Jason Denayer(def) (Galatasaray - End of Loan)


Edin Dzeko(att) (AS Roma), Florian Lejeune(def) (Eibar), Enes Unal(att) (FC Twente - Loan), Luke Brattan(mid) (Melbourne City - Loan), Ruben Sobrino(att) (Alaves - Loan), Aaron Mooy(mid) (Huddersfield - Loan), Gabriel Jesus(att) (Palmeiras - Loan), Marlos Moreno(mid) (Deportivo La Coruna - Loan), Martin Demichelis(sp)(def) (Released), Richard Wright(gk) (Released)

Manchester City's four-year wait finally bore fruit early this year after they confirmed that Josep Guardiola will be signing on as the replacement for Manuel Pellegrini. City started preparing ground for one of the biggest managerial appointments when it became clear that Roberto Mancini's day at the club were numbered. Guardiola though opted to sign on for Bayern Munchen and City had to settle for Pellegrini, though the Chilean coach was always seen as a stop gap measure before they got their man. Pellegrini had a successful first two years at the club and looked set to lead City to a third Premier League title in five years. However City's confirmation that Pellegrini would be leaving the club at the end the winter transfer window backfired badly for the club as they lost their way and only just managed to secure a qualification to the Champions League by finishing fourth last season. Fans will be hoping that it was worth the wait and Guardiola himself will be looking to test himself in what is considered the toughest league in Europe. Doubts persist as to whether Guardiola is indeed the managerial genius as it is perceived and the Catalan coach will be taking on a side that is not considered to be clear favorites to lift the title. Guardiola has recognized the need to rebuild a stale squad and has spent a busy summer as City have once again splurged in the transfer market. Leroy Sane has been their biggest outlay so far, with the winger arriving from Schalke and is expected to be the first choice for Guardiola on the right side of Kevin De Bruyne. Gabriel Jesus has been the target of another big move but though City have completed the transfer, the striker has been loaned back to Palmeiras and will not be available until December. Ilkay Gundogan and Nolito have also been added to improve the midfield while the teenage duo of Marlos Moreno and Oleksandr Zinchenko are more of long term projects for the club. Despite the huge outlay, City have failed to fix their Achilles heel that is the defense. City clearly struggled whenever captain Vincent Kompany was out injured and with the Belgian's fitness still a question mark, Guardiola is searching for a more reliable central defender. City have attempted two high profile moves so far and while the first one was shot down even before it began, with Juventus naming a high price for Leonardo Bonucci, John Stones looks to be a more realistic prospect though the Everton is also holding out for a British record fee. Regardless of who will be arriving, Guardiola will have to improve his options in the defense if City are to have any hopes of mounting a successful bid in what could be another close title fight this season.


Guardiola has been brought in with the express bid of challenging not only on the domestic front but also in Europe and anything less will be seen as a failure by both the fans and the board.