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Noisy neighbors building dynasty of their own

City set sights on glory

By | 23rd October 2011

To start, declarations that Manchester City are now guaranteed to win the league or triumph in Europe come as extremely premature overreactions.

But the possible reverberations concerning Manchester City’s potential future conquests in the wake of their clinical 6-1 destruction over England’s most dominant team and Europe’s runner-up only to a seemingly invincible Barca do tend to evoke the sense that Roberto Mancini is on the verge of pushing their “noisy neighbors” tag into oblivion by reaching the stratosphere of the world’s clubs.

His reactions showed as much. The moment wasn’t lost in the Italian, but his grin at the final whistle showed that he is a man very much aware that this may just be the first summit he has climbed as the executor’s of Sheikh Mansour’s lofty ambitions.

Whilst having seemingly unlimited funds and means to achieve every club’s wildest dreams, to whom much has given much has indeed been tested, with Mark Hughes’s sacking a very recent reminder of the strict standards City’s new regime has implemented in pursuit of swift success on all fronts.

Mancini has built a squad, and culture, capable of competition with arguably any club in the world, and the blue half of Manchester has become just as much a desirable destination to footballers at the top level.

Sergio Aguero, David Silva, Mario Balotelli, Edin Dzeko, and a host of other influential stars have given reason to believe that the thought of winning trophies at the newly-christened Etihad is just as attractive as the opportunities at European establishments like Old Trafford, the Nou Camp, San Siro, Bernabeu, etc.

Sir Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United masterpiece has long been the blueprint for any aspiring manager, and this defeat will still be among the minutiae of failure in stark contrast against his unbelievable success and longevity.

But after their hugely-impressive FA Cup semi-final triumph over Ferguson and co last season, and their subsequent triumph bringing City their first trophy under new ownership finally banishing the taunting banner long-held by United’s faithful, it seems that all is there for Mancini to dominate his own generation at the helm of Carrington’s other tenants.

His handling of Mario Balotelli, who looks very like in the ‘top five’ world footballer in the wake of his dominant performance against United, is perhaps the perfect example of his excellent progress for the club.

Balotelli incurred the criticism of former boss Jose Mourinho, whose own accomplishments to date have brought about comparisons with Ferguson, deemed him too immature and childish to succeed at the highest level.

His antics, whether one sees them as harmless over-publicized mishaps of youth or red letter signals of precarious mental health, clouded his early time with the club, with magnificent goals contrasted with needless red cards a succinct summation of most of last season, his first in Manchester.

This year it looks as if the mercurial Italian striker is set to dominate at least as much of the back page as the front page, his brace the 2nd and 3rd goals of the year for him in just his 4th appearance and second start.

And his goals, including a further strike in City’s 2-0 win over Birmingham City in their Carling Cup tie was greeted with the striker running across the pitch, not to celebrate in front of the opposing fans the way many might envision given his bad reputation, but rather embraced Mancini who he credited for showing faith in him and “being like a father.”

His dignified manner in relation to the respective sagas of Emmanuel Adebayor, Jerome Boateng, and now Carlos Tevez, have also shown his refusal to tolerate spoiled antics, which may come at a more regular rate given his star-studded squad’s fierce competition for places.

Even the signing of Owen Hargreaves looks as if it may pay off, with the former England man contributing the other goal against Birmingham and providing depth and fresh legs for lesser competitions like the Carling Cup.

To crown a side who lead the table by a mere five points before Halloween is absurd, and Mancini knows that nothing will come easily for his charges.

Their 2-1 victory over Villarreal at the death was impressive, but their previous Champions League outing against Bayern Munich resulted in a 2-0 loss, proving the Blues still have some bit of work to do if they want to begin a period of dominance domestically and abroad.

And whilst the Abu Dhabi United Group undoubtedly expect to conquer the Premier League and the Champions League in the near future, they will also rely on Mancini to utilize and develop the planned “Etihad Campus” which will seek to bring a first-class academy and training facility to the club.

City have a lot of work to do if they are to replace Manchester United as the city’s most successful club, and enjoy all the successes associated with Ferguson’s brilliant tenure.

But under Roberto Mancini, it seems they may be on the right path, one that doesn’t bode well for any club in Europe who comes up against them on the pitch or in the transfer market.



Reader Comments

The below views are those of our readers and do not reflect the opinions of Premiership Talk or its employees.
  1. Rajneesh says:

    Yesterday’s performance sure was commendable. But to say it can be sustained for a long time is premature at this time. Yes they are taking right steps. Build a good squad in short term and concentrate on academy for longterm. Lets see how the next 2/3 years unfold.

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