Reaching the top is much easier than staying there. When you are fighting your way to the top, you are the underdog and there is additional motivation. But once you reach the top everyone else begins to take a shot at you.
This will be the lesson Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini would have learnt from this season. The 15-point gap at the summit between the two Manchester clubs has rendered the rest of the season meaningless. Champions League has also been a major disappointment for Manchester City this season.
Mancini now needs to concentrate on the transfer market to ensure that the blunders of last summer’s transfers are not repeated.
Aleksandar Kolarov, Pablo Zabaleta, Gael Clichy, Micah Richards and Maicon ensure that Manchester City have the best collection of full backs in the world. But central defence is a bit more problematic. Though Vincent Kompany and Matija Nastasic form a solid combination, Kompany's season has been short of the brilliant performances he gave last season.
With Joleon Lescott losing the trust of Mancini and Kolo Toure not looking the part, a pair of new centre backs will be required in the summer market. Angelo Ogbonno of Torino and Mamhmadou Sakho of PSG would be good additions if they were not able to prise Daniel Agger from Liverpool.
City generally play a 4-2-2-2 formation with two central midfielders - Samir Nasri and David Silva play as inverted wingers. Silva is one of the key players in this team but on the other wing Nasri has been poor of late. Scott Sinclair doesn't suit City's way of playing and so might be moving on this summer.
In the centre of the park, Yaya Toure has been immense but he lacks support. Gareth Barry, Jack Rodwell and Javi Garcia are able to do a job in midfield but they neither provide the spark of Yaya nor the fighting spirit of the departed Nigel De Jong. Mancini's long-term target Danielle De Rossi would be a dream signing for City.
City won the tittle powered by an amazing attacking quartet of Carlos Tevez, Sergio Aguero, Mario Balotelli and Edin Dzeko. Each seemed to be firing on all cylinders and helped City pip their rivals Manchester United on goal difference.
Since then Balotelli has been sold to AC Milan and Dzeko has not been consistent enough. Though Tevez has been good, his contract has only one more season to go, so City need to add more firepower to catch up with Manchester United who seem to have moved to the next level with the addition of Robin van Persie.
City have been linked with Napoli's Edinson Cavani , Atletico Madrid's Falcao and Liverpool's Luis Suarez. Of the three, Suarez looks the safest bet with him already having Premier League experience. But he might be the most difficult to get.
If City act fast and decisively in the summer and make a statement of intent in the transfer market, then they can push United all the way next season. Another poor transfer season will ensure that next season will be just as painful as this one for City supporters.
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