Following on from today’s previous article “Manchester City Face Capital Start to the New Season”, here is a detailed look into the season ahead, based on the released fixtures...
As you will be aware, City kick off with a difficult start to the season, travelling to North London to face Tottenham Hotspur. Spurs have had good news this morning with Fabrizio Romano reporting Son Heung-min set to sign a new contract. However, he may be without his partner in crime Harry Kane, and with rumours circulating, could Kane be up against Spurs come the first day of the new season?
The remaining August fixtures are newly promoted Norwich (who managed a 3-2 victory over us early last season), and Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal, both fixtures being at home. City fans will be hopeful for 6 points out of 6 in those two fixtures.
City face a tricky September with both Leicester and Chelsea away in that month. As we do not wish to remember, we have lost to Chelsea in the last 3 fixtures so this match will be tough for Pep and the boys. Chelsea should be title contenders the coming season (as they should have been this year) and this fixture could be telling for Chelsea’s hopes at competing.
October does not get any easier with City travelling away to Anfield to begin with. However, after a pretty difficult run up until this, the remainder of October is easier with the fixtures being Burnley (H), Brighton (A) and Crystal Palace (H). This may act as a bit of a comfort blanket if – worst case – we do not pick up points away at Liverpool. Of course, despite their season which on the face of it seemed poor, Liverpool still finished third (just) and Virgil van Dijk back, this fixture again could be influential on the title race.
November begins at the swamp – of course being Old Trafford. The past season we struggled massively against United and hopefully, the coming season will be different and of the back of an easy end of October, we can carry on a successful run. It does not get much easier from there with Everton (H) being the next fixture. On the face of it, this is not easy, however, we do not seem to have had much trouble against the Toffee’s recently.
This follows on with West Ham (H) and Aston Villa (A), two similar fixtures (difficulty wise and kit wise). Neither of these teams should be underestimated, especially with the new Villa signing of Emi Buendia from Norwich. Will Jack Grealish be in a City shirt by then though?
December is a very busy month with six fixtures, however the majority of them on the easier side. The teams we face are Watford (A), Wolves (H), Leeds (H), Newcastle (A), Leicester (H) and Brentford (A). The ones to watch this month are Leicester and Leeds, both beating us at the Etihad the past season. Brentford will also be an interesting fixture, with the newly-promoted team being known for playing good-to-watch football, as do Pep’s men.
January is the run around of the start of the season’s fixtures, the reverse legs of Arsenal and Chelsea (along with Southampton at the end of the month). By this point in the season, we will have better knowledge of how the title race is shaping up, and therefore, we will know just how important the two matches against ‘the top six’ teams are – and the guess is, very important.
The fixtures in February are particularly interesting as this is when the Champion’s League round of 16 fixtures begin and it is normally a busy month. We start the month off with Brentford (H) followed by Norwich (A), Spurs (H) and Everton (A). All these fixtures should be won, potentially except from Tottenham who play against Guardiola’s system well. However, as we know there is chaos in terms of their top striker and void manager’s position so we will not know the state of their team until the start of the season.
March kicks off with the home fixture of the derby, followed again by Crystal Palace (A) and Brighton (H). It goes without saying there is only one glaringly obvious fixture to focus on this month and hopefully we pull out all the stops to ensure a derby win for the home fans.
April is a five-fixture month, however, hopefully, we will still be in the Champion’s League at this point so we will also have this to contend with. Liverpool and Leeds are the only fixtures that stand out this month, however at this stage of the season with the strength of Chelsea and Liverpool, and dare we say it United; wins are vital.
The final six fixtures of the season are as good as we could have wished for – especially considering the tough start we face. The final six being, Wolves (A), Watford (H), Leeds (A), Newcastle (H), West Ham (A) and Aston Villa (H). The best of this being that the final game of the season is at home – our fans will get to help the boys over the line if the title is still up for grabs at that stage.