Five reasons why City won’t catch United in chase for the title
Manchester United currently lead rivals Manchester City by seven points at the top of the Premier League. There are five major reasons why City won’t be able to catch United this time around.
The current Champions of England famously recovered an eight-point deficit to clinch the title on the final day of last season in injury-time. It was heartbreak for Sir Alex Ferguson and his team, who prematurely celebrated a title success that never was at the Stadium of Light.
Sir Alex is the main reason why City will have to produce a miracle to regain their crown this season. The most celebrated British manager in history will still be hurting after the dramatic turnaround his team suffered in the final stages of last season.
At the age of 71, Sir Alex Ferguson will want to ensure that in his final years as manager his team can recapture his most prized asset of all – the Premier League title.
The next reason comes in the form of three letters – R V P. The hot shot striker, whose goals are vital to United’s hunt for Premiership glory, have often rescued Manchester United from some poor performances.
A striker that can have an average game but still score two goals, is often the difference maker come the end of the season.
Without the former Arsenal striker, Manchester United would have just 27 points and would be battling alongside the likes of Norwich for a place in mid-table.
Unfortunately for close rivals City, they are often the cause of their own downfall. The club is riddled with bad press – especially concerning Mario Balotelli. Roberto Mancini and the troublesome Balotelli have had their fair share of public bust-ups, with the most recent occurring just two weeks ago at their Carrington training ground.
Public spats between players and coaching staff are not the ideal way to concentrate on the league – when you are seven points behind the leaders – and looking to win the Premier League in back-to-back fashion.
It is this lack of harmony that has made the team look very disjointed at times, and perhaps working on their cohesion should be their first priority.
England No.1 Joe Hart had an indifferent year, for both City and England. Usually a match saver in his own right, Hart has suffered from many a suspect moment between the sticks over the last year.
Combined with an infamous rant after the defeat to Real Madrid in the Champions League, the former Shrewsbury Town keeper has drew a lot of criticism from pundits – most notably Roy Keane in 2012, who said:
“There’s a fine line between being confident and cocky; and I think he’s been a little too cocky this year.”
Manchester City seem to have some underlying issues with egotistical players that are on huge salaries – but often look lacking in effort on the pitch. However, their recent performances suggest it is a work in progress.
Willingness to never-say-never is the perfect way to sum up Manchester United this season. They have come back from losing positions time after time this campaign and it could be the difference when it comes to Manchester City re-creating their famous eight point turnover with just six games remaining last season.
City fans will rightfully argue their case this time round – as 17 games remain – but so far it looks like silverware is returning to Old Trafford.
Thomas Bradley, football correnspondent