Why The Manchester City Underachiever Tag Is Unfair

Published: Feb 06, 2014 15:17pm EST
By Jason Bardwell, Sports Writer for Konsume Sports

Please Note: This article was updated Feb 06, 2014 @ 03:17pm EST


The expectation on Manchester City right now is that they will win every game they play in. Whether it is Liverpool, Barcelona or someone from a lower league in the FA Cup, City, the media and fans expects the win.


In recent seasons the Citizens have found themselves in the knockout stages of the Champions League, FA Cup winners, Charity Shield winners and Premier League winners in one of the most dramatic finishes to a Premier League season ever.


There are many more shiny trophies expected, but it wasn't always like that. On this day in 1997, City found themselves in a game away to Norwich City, their opponents Saturday, in the second tier of English football. After years of bad management, bad luck and bad purchases the club found themselves on a slide which would see them slide all the way down to the third tier of English football.


The season didn't start off in the best of ways with way too many tied games keeping the mighty Manchester City locked in mid table and promotion looking like a long shot. Known publicly now, but not at the time, was the fact that the next season it was vital City were promoted back to the second tier as the club found itself financially on the brink with another season in the third tier maybe ruining the club completely.


Frank Clark was on his way out of Manchester City as the team traveled to Carrow Road on that February 7th 1998. A boring goal less draw, even with the Georgian wizard Gio Kinkladze and now Wigan boss Uwe Rosler, summed up the word underachieving for this side. The bore draw saw City hover just above the relegation zone with sixteen games to go.  


History now shows that Frank Clark was fired ten days after this game and Joe Royle took charge. By this time though the club were in free fall and, as stated earlier, found themselves in the third tier of English football and financially on the brink.  


Now Manchester City are being classed as underachievers because of the money spent since 2008 being compared with trophies won. Certainly the billion dollar price tag everyone points suggests that City should have added more silverware by now but really, should they have? 


The best comparison people look at are Chelsea, who have also invested a lot of money in their squad. Since the takeover in 2003 the Chelsea owner has thrown in a whopping $500 million more than the Manchester City owners, that's around $100 million for each year between their takeover and that of City's.

So what have they won with that extra $1.5 billion? Domestically they have won three League titles, four FA Cups, two League cups. In Europe it was only last season they won the Europa League and the season before that the Champions League. So pretty successful right, not quite. 


While Manchester City were struggling in the second and third tiers of English football the London side were consistently finishing in the top six in the Premier League. In fact in Manchester City's struggling times from 1997 until the Abramovic takeover they won the FA Cup twice, the League cup once, the UEFA Cup Winners Cup and UEFA Supercup.


The fact is Abramovic has now been the owner of Chelsea for ten full seasons (this is his eleventh) and domestically has only won the League three times, FA Cup two times and the League cup once more than in the previous ten years, without the money.


So considering where Chelsea were and what they were winning before the investment and comparing that to Manchester City's progress and I think it should take less money to get Chelsea to that next level of consistently winning titles and major silverware than it would City, who did not enjoy a great decade in the 1990's. 


So think about that when City take on Norwich this Saturday that sixteen years ago Manchester City were struggling at the foot of the second tier, about to slide into the third. What were Chelsea doing at the same point? Away to Arsenal and in second place in the Premier League.  



Comments (1)

  • Anonymous   Feb 10, 2014 @ 07:46PM
    tell mr pellegrini to be careful jose has a reputation for scratching peoples eyes out when things don't go his way meeow!!!!!! BUT HE PROBABLY WON'T WANT TO TALK ABOUT THAT -

Jason Bardwell
Sports Writer


Avg. Readership (monthly)


Followers (writers)


Last Active
90+ days ago





Other Features

Greg Gianforte: Exploding Prairie Dogs, Assault, & Early Voters

Pokemon Go Wants Your Data, But Not Your Personal Data

Is E3 A Joke?


Take a Tour   ·   Contact Us   ·   Privacy statement Konsume Media LLC 2016. All rights reserved.

Generated in 0.294 seconds in which 0.281 seconds were spent on a total of 49 queries. Zlib compression enabled.