You can make a lot of comments on Man City but their real problem is that for all their spending Siddy do not seem to have the basis for a title winning team. This at a time where none of the teams above them bar Arsenal are progressive. Spurs maybe but they have much the same problem as City.
The problem is one of balance. If I asked people to name City’s best players no doubt many would agree with me, Bellamy and Tevez. Sadly both have the same downside they both play off a striker. Now whilst some would say 4321 then like the top teams. No as neither is a midfielder or a winger. Sure they will track back to a degree but both are aggressive forwards. For a good team the two City star players would make great bench options but not starters. They also have a village of players who are Bellamy and Tevez lite.
It’s possible to argue Barcelona play a similar set-up but even they have stumbled and are being carried by Messi the kind of player no one else has. They also have a core of midfielders who keep the ball and work their arses off not Barry, de Jong and Ireland.
In addition the City stars are not playing off Eto’o or Ibrahomovic but Santa Cruz and Adebayor.
A lot of their top forwards miss games as well such as Bellamy, Tevez, Adebayor and Santa Cruz.
At the back they have spent money on Toure and Lescott (out for 5 weeks) but centre halves without midfield cover can only do their best. Top teams main method of defence is midfielders who keep their discipline and the ball not Ireland. If you have 3 pure forwards it’s hard to defend without a stellar midfield.
Mancini seems less than inspired so far leaking credibility with each mumbled press conference. However talk of replacing him with Mourinho misses several facts: Mourinho is not the force of 2003 even if he is not the wreck of a man who left Chelsea set up for life: Mourinho appeared to have no real ideas when it came to buying players either with his best acquisitions Cech, Essien and Drogba on their way so only Carvalho who played at Porto was a strong addition: Mourinho arguably cemented the fall of Chelsea by not setting priorities and wearing out his fringe players and wide player core mentally with his personality, rotation and substitution policy. Thus reducing their squad that the man who introduced 14 man teams ended up with 8 core players un-rotated padded with junk.
Chelsea are not a template as when Abramovich arrived they already had a core with Terry and Lampard coming into their prime. City have no players of that level and none seem readily available to any amount of money in the rest of the world. Like Chelsea to ditch the players they should like Wright-Phillips, Adebayor and Robinho will require them to subsidise their wages as Chelsea did with Veron and Crespo.It will be hard for the owners to dump expensive players.
I would look for up and coming players and be prepared for attrition but to develop and wait for the development of players needs the kind of stability and barren years Man United to a degree and Arsenal have been through. They need to find a stable back 7 and switch the focus from wingers who are lightweight defensively to a defensive core who retain and win the ball.
Personally I think they need a 3 year plan to get into place to challenge. They need to get the best from what they have to start. That would need Mancini to step up or to replace him with someone who will build a club and for that I would rather a Moyes, but probably not Moyes, than Mourinho who has not improved Inter notwithstanding his one good European result over an over rated Chelsea.
Most of the players they could buy like Villa and Ribery are ludicrously expensive and at the wrong stage of their career. They would still be behind a Man United entering the 5 best years most likely of Wayne Rooney and The Fletch.
Teams are built from the back not the front. Indeed City fans can at least comfort themselves they did not entrench their dysfunction with a player like Kaka. Kaka is a joy when playing but has no position and does not even play wide. His Milan did not exactly threaten the league every year and their one title likely from the power of Shevchenko more than Kaka.
Where the 20-25 year old players outside Rooney and Messi are is a good question for me. Almost all teams outside Arsenal appear to be getting older without any organic improvement. Indeed top teams seem to struggle to even find or produce simple things like holding midfielders and full backs increasingly.
City have to realise that money is only part of the answer.
Stability and long term vision is needed not an orgy of handing money to spivs.
The best team money can buy is not necessarily the best team.