That's the pertinent question the soccer fraternity would be asking on the morning of tuesday , April 17th 2012 , after the last 2 rounds of league games , with city taking maximum points.
I'll boldly state that manchester City are actually the best team in in the premiership even if they are 5 points behind man ttd . I do take a somewhat contradictory stance , given that i also believe Alex Ferguson's men shall be crowned champions for 2011 / 2012 season.
My point shall be proved when City triumph over Utd at the Etihad in their clash at the end of the month - meaning City do the double over united . In addition , Man city shall win all their remaining fixtures ; and same United, obviously bar one.... that keeps them tops ahead of City by 2 points come the end of the season.
Why this crazy prophesy i hear you ask ! Hold on folks , it comes on the back of some analytical work. City topped the league for over half the season , and up to date have scored more , and let in fewer goals than Man utd ; On the playing side : City are as just as good as Utd ; probably more pleasing on the eye than the Red half. Player for player , i reckon City edge it narrowly. I hear the dissenters say : " why aren't City in pole-position..... " simple , teams that run into bad weather in februrary / march tend to struggle for between 5 - 8 games . It can be such a miserable period to be in at that time of the season - with fate dealing you a hard blow. Ask Spurs about it ! confirm the answers with Newcastle ; then corroborate from Arsenal - teams that have sealed their fate by having a good run in this period ; while spurs spluttered.... Man City have failed to buck the trend , while Alex Ferguson has mastered his destiny in this aspect. My point is - but for this period ! the blue half would have clinched it.
Mario Balotelli has been made the poster-child for Man city's implosion / impending failure. How wrong! Correct - that the boy is infuriating , and yes , still only BOY !!!!! , however , it won't be fair to make him the sole scape goat. The owners , the manager , the players have a fair share of blame . Having reached the top of the premier league for a few months , they mishandled the oppurtunity to bring in a player or two , with fire-power in January , whilest losing The Toure Brothers to the A.N. C ; The sequestration of Tevez did not help their cause...... but the catalyst to that was Mancini's publicly stated pre-conditions for reinstating Tevez back in the squad . Such matters ought to have been done in private to avoid the sort of impasse it inevitably created in the end . There was little room for a climb down once daggers are drawn so publicly. Then there is the players : they simply lost courage and believe in a strange way when it mattered most.
This is no way an indictment or a post-mortem of City's season , as they may go on to prove me wrong ; but paradoxically a message that : but for small details they did not fulfill their true potential . That says a lot - the glass is half-filled for the club. What Man City have attained from this season is arguably precedent and pedigree . These are essential building blocks for championship success. Provided all is kept together, heads calmed , and the owners leave their sword in it's sheath, if not this season , certainly next the premiership crown shall be coming their way.
For United , they must know there is fresh competition again... Fergie has seen-off a few in his time , but it's getting narrower than ever - it is in real terms , a dead-heat . An intriguing clash of experience and cash