Manchester City may have progressed to the Champions League quarter-finals, but it wasn’t without costly casualties that could hamper their already disappointing domestic campaign. The Sky Blues lost captain Vincent Kompany to injury, while centre-back partner Nicolas Otamendi followed not long after, and manager Manuel Pellegrini could well be fearful of missing out on top-four spot in the Premier League as a result.
Man City’s competitors putting pressure on them
Manchester City are 11/4 to finish outside top-four this season, and given the competition hot on their heels in the table, the Sky Blues should be more than worried. West Ham United are in fifth place and just two points adrift of the Capital One Cup winners with nine games to go. The Hammers have picked up more points than their opponents in the last 10 Premier League outings, and recent form suggests United will topple City in the remaining matches.
With Bayern Munich manager Pep Guardiola taking charge of the club next season, enduring he will have Champions League is essential so he can attract the biggest names in Europe. However, City are certainly not entitled to a top-four spot, nor all the playing for one of late. The Premier League giants were recently held to a goalless draw against relegation-threatened Norwich City, and are coming off the back of three defeats from their previous five.
Two league wins since January isn’t enough for a club of City’s standing, and unless they can start to hit some form they could well allow the chasing pack to make ground on them in the race for a top-four spot. West Ham are the closest challengers, but bitter rivals Manchester United and Liverpool are two sides expected to be there or thereabouts come May. Manchester City’s poor form stems from a lack of goals, with the side having scored one or less goals in five of their last six. Their poor run of results on the road has done them no favours either.
Away form and injuries could see them struggle
Only four clubs have scored fewer goals away in the Premier League than Manchester City and only six clubs have won few games away in the Premier League than Manchester City. And with Pellegrini revealing captain Kompany now be out of action for a month, the Sky Blues are in real danger of throwing everything away at the death. They’d hardly set the Premier League alight this season, but are hoping Pep Guardiola’s takeover in the summer can see them performing back to their best.
For now, however, could City miss out on a Champions League spot in the table?
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