With the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson as manager of Manchester United, to go along with changes with the top clubs in the Premier League, predicting who and what team will win the league is wide open. With question marks with every team, the one who at the end will rise above and win the 2013-14 Premier League title is Manchester City.
Manchester City come into the 2013-14 with a new manager in the form of Chilean Manuel Pellegrini and with it, a new tactical philosophy, and also a better atmosphere within the dressing room and training fields as a result of Pellegrini’s personality.While he is new to the Premier League, his track record as a manager shows that he has won everywhere he has managed while fielding teams who are balanced but strong in attack.
With a new manager and one who will bring a more positive outlook and attitude towards his man management with the players on the team, this gives Manchester City an advantage over their main competitors Chelsea and Manchester United who also have new managers in charge of their teams. Additionally, these new managers, with Jose Mourinho returning for a second stint with Chelsea, they go into situations with personnel that do not fit their playing style and/or uncertainty of relationship with players in the case of David Moyes at Manchester United.
When examining beyond just the managers, Manchester City are the team who will win the 2013-14 Premier League title because of the balance of the squad. Beginning on defense, Manchester City have the best goalkeeper/defender set of the top teams. With a stalwart like Vincent Kompany as the center-back, the club already have the least amount of questions with their defense. Throw in that you have an emerging star like Matija Nastasic pairing with Kompany as center-backs, with Pablo Zabaleta and Gael Clichy as the fullbacks and Joe Hart in goal, Manchester City have the edge over Chelsea and Manchester United in the back.
The midfield is an area where Manchester City have upgraded in terms of quality and tactical options. The additions of Fernandinho and Jesus Navas were necessary and much welcomed additions to a midfield, who before the arrival of these players was second best by light years to that which Chelsea boots in the same position(s). Now with these additions, they have closed the gap on Chelsea and distanced themselves from Manchester United in terms of quality, depth and strength of their midfield players.
Finally upfront, Manchester City have upgraded with the additions of the likes of Alvaro Negredo from Spanish side Sevilla and Stefan Jovetic from Italian side Fiorentina. Both players will fit into Pellegrini’s tactical philosophy with Negredo serving as a physical yet skillful target man, a type of forward who over the years has done well in the Premier League, similar to Didier Drogba. All while Jovetic can serve as that versatile forward who feels equally comfortable playing as the center forward or withdrawn towards the wing.
Despite change in manager and addition of players, Manchester City retain the skeleton of a team that won the league back in the 2011-12 season and with Pellegrini in charge, his presence will create a better atmosphere within the team, and as a result, foster a positive attitude, feeling and play which will see them win the 2013-14 Premier League title.