There was a nice piece in today's Guardian by David Conn, based upon an interview with Brian Marwood which follows on nicely from the excellent look at City's finances and how they will comply with the UEFA regulations by Swiss Ramble in this post.
Its all largely very positive stuff from Conn, but central to the piece (and one of Swiss Ramble's main areas to reduce the £121 million losses) is a change to the strategy seen over the past few seasons that has witnessed unprecedented levels of spending on players in order to advance the club in the position they are currently in.
"Player acquisitions on the scale we have seen in recent transfer windows will no longer be required in the years ahead, now that we have such a deep and competitive squad," pledged Cook in the annual report.
"We expect our financial performance to position us to be compliant with financial fair play when the regulation starts to come in," states Wallace, formerly the chief financial officer for the sports media business IMG.
And quoting Marwood himself:
"We are comfortable where we are. Now the intensity of signing players is levelling off, allowing this group to build and develop - they haven't gelled yet."
"We have fast-tracked a lot; we need to put the structure in place. We talk about elite development, the academy, because that is the foundation. That is the future for Manchester City."
This of course reinforces the message we have heard recently, that there was a need to spend big and quickly in order to rapidly progress the club to the position where they are not only challenging for Champions League qualification, but for titles and cups. This has meant that a more gradual process of bringing in and integrating players into the side was never going to happen (particularly with the ability to invest as much as ADUG has allowed).
Both Marwood, the annual report and Swiss Ramble all state that transfer spend will have to be significantly parred down in order to comply with the impending UEFA regulations, yet, if the aim of Champions League is met this season, the likelihood is that the squad will need adding to. Mancini has spoken of the squad being two or three players short, but to buy in the type of quality required will surely require upwards of £100 million (obviously discounting any incoming transfer revenues).
If budgetary constraints are such that there will be a stiff cap placed on spending activity in order to comply off the pitch, could this then impact on the pitch at a time where the club is positioned for success like never before?