Man City have a lot to prove this Premier League season. They have spent more than many other teams in the league. In fact, they have spent more than many other leagues put together. They have also gotten ridden of many top players that have done them proud in the past.
If they take the title this season then they can start paying back the money they have spent. If not, and if they lose in style, then there will be some more major changes, this time in the backroom.
Chelsea have spent big but have also worked hard to keep their wage bill down and their profits up. The same can be said for Man City to an extent, although not quite as much.
City have spent big on Silva, Ederson, Walker, Luiz, Danilo and Mendy. They are all big names and they will all make this one of the strongest teams in the Premier League this season. They have had to make some cuts and some sacrifices elsewhere in order to avoid financial fair play regulations though.
They let Zabaleta go to West Ham on a free. He would have been on a big wage, but he was a fantastic servant who will now be replaced by Walker. Gael Clichy was also released, as was Caballero, Sagna and Navas. These are players that they spent big on, players still considered to be world class, but players that had to be released because of those regulations.
Elsewhere, Nolito, who didn’t make much of an impact, was sold, with Kolarov, Fernando and Iheanacho following him out the door.
This team is nothing like the team that played last year. It’s hard to see how they will make all of these new players work together. The dressing room must be in chaos, especially when you consider that there are still 3 weeks left to go and that no one in the City squad (apart from those just signed) will feel safe. This is a team that has always prided itself on having strong reserves and those reserves have had it easy, earning paychecks and barely warming the bench, but now they’ll be worried.
I think this will cause chaos for the next few weeks and that could easily last well into this new Premier League season. If this were a video game and only quality mattered, they would win all of their games and the title would be theres. But there’s more to it and they could have just shot themselves in the foot.
Brighton have made a lot of changes, but nothing notable and certainly nothing as impressive as Man City, as is to be expected. These signings include Josh Kerr, Davy Propper, Suttner and Matthew Ryan, names that many EPL fans may not even recognize but names that will serve to strengthen an already decent team.
They are playing at home and they will have all of the confidence that comes with playing your first game in the top tier, but it’s hard to see them getting anything out of this game. They are up against it and I think that Man City will look to this game as a practice session, a way for them to test the might of their new squad and to see what they are capable of.
I think we will see the best of Man City halfway through the season. In fact, I’m fairly confident that they will do what Chelsea did last season, playing average but solid football throughout the first half and then dominating for the second half.
They need those first few months to settle in. In that time, we won’t see the best of them, but we can still expect them to win games like this and to settle in the top four. It will be close, it may be uncomfortable and we certainly will see better from them in other games, but it will likely be a good start for the Citizens nonetheless.
You can’t get much for the home win on its own, but you can get good money for them to win by more than 2 and I think that’s a sound bet.
Betting Tip: Man City -2, 2.20 @ Bet365