2016 – Chelsea
In 2016, City’s title challenge had fallen apart, trailing Leicester by twelve points, but Chelsea’s defence of the Premier League title was sufficiently worse, as they sat in 10th place, a huge 28 points behind the leaders. City needed the win to consolidate third place, but Stamford Bridge where too often City were beaten.
But on 16th April, Manuel Pellegrini’s side took full advantage of Chelsea’s dismal form and ran out 3-0 winners in West London. Sergio Aguero helped himself to a hat-trick as City hammered the champions on their own patch, with Aguero becoming the first City player to bag a treble at the Bridge since Ron Futcher’s hat-trick gin a 4-1 in September 1978.
2014 – Sunderland
The bogey team were at it again in Manchester. After losing 3-2 to title rivals Liverpool, City hosted Sunderland at the Etihad Stadium, and for a while, everything looked rosy for City.
Fernandinho gave the blues the lead after just two minutes and it looked like City would stroll past the Black Cats. But the visitors had other ideas and two goals in ten, late second half minutes put Sunderland in control with just seven minutes remaining. With time ticking away, Samir Nasri managed an equaliser to spare City’s blushes again and kept close to the leaders.
2011 - Manchester United
When the draw for City’s first FA Cup semi-final since 1981 was made, it was only inevitable it would be against United. The blues still had a poor record against the reds and had lost 2-1 at Old Trafford in February. United were favourites, but the belief was that, if City were to win, they would win the cup.
After a tense first half, the score remained goalless, but in the second half, Yaya Toure captialised on a mistake in the United defence to charge forward and score the game’s only to send the blue half of Wembley wild with delight and the club back to Wembley for the final.
2009 - SV Hamburger
European football was high on the agenda for Manchester City. Their season had started in July in the UEFA Cup and it now saw them facing Martin Jol’s side for a place in the semi-final. The blues had lost in Germany but got a crucial away goal in a 3-1 defeat. A 2-0 win would eb enough to send City through.
In true City style, 3-1 wasn’t a big enough mountain to climb (why climb Snowdon when you can take on Everest) and allowed the Germans to take the lead after 12 minutes. City equalised five minutes later through Elano, then took the lead five minutes after half-time. The blues poured forward for a third goal, but it wasn’t forthcoming and the blues bowed out despite winning 2-1 on the night.