The last 10 years have been a joyful one if you’re a Manchester City fan. With 818 points in 381 games, coaches such as Roberto Mancini, Manuel Pellegrini and Pep Guardiola have built the Manchester club into a domestic powerhouse. With four Premier League titles, two FA Cups, three League Cups and three Community Shields, the Citizens have had a plethora of immense talent at the club in the past decade, and so here’s a look at their best XI in a 4-3-3.
GK – Joe Hart
It would be too easy to pick Ederson. Pep Guardiola has moulded the Brazil international into one of the best goalkeepers in football but it’s hard to look past Joe Hart despite his decline following his departure in 2018. The former England No. 1 didn’t miss a minute of Premier League football between and 2013, cementing himself as one of the league’s best stoppers. At 23, Hart was instrumental for Mancini’s Manchester City squad that clinched the Premier League title on the last day of the season against QPR.
RB – Pablo Zabaleta
An arrival from Espanyol in 2008, the Argentine was an important player for Manchester City in the 2010s. With six domestic honours whilst at the Etihad, Pablo Zabaleta was arguably the first name on the teamsheet. Not only was he an exceptional player, but he also helped foreigners integrate into life at Manchester City. During this decade, it’s difficult to name a better right-back in the Premier League for consistency and determination.
CB – Vincent Kompany
There are players at Manchester City who have excelled over a couple of season’s but it’s important to recognise those that have played at a high level for a sustained period and Vincent Kompany is one of them. He is Mr. Manchester City. The Belgium international was an iconic player, not just for City but in the Premier League. During the 2010’s, it’s difficult to name a better centre-back.
CB – Aymeric Laporte
Whilst Vincent Kompany was exceptional, it’s difficult to name another Manchester City central defender like his level. Nicolas Otamendi has played over a century of games in all competitions for the Citizens, but he’s nowhere near in the same category as his former teammate. The same can be said for John Stones. Aymeric Laporte was identified by Pep Guardiola as a ball-playing defender that City had been missing. The Frenchman’s ability to play centrally or on the left and his ability to read the game is one of his strengths whilst he’s arguably the first current defender on the team sheet when fit.
LB – Aleksander Kolarov
Brought to Manchester by Roberto Mancini, Aleksander Kolarov arrived for £16 million, a substantial fee at the time. Technically gifted, the Serbia international has a rocket of a left-foot. Kolarov’s deadball ability is up there with the absolute best. Kolarov played in 30 or more games (all competitions) barring one season in the seven years he spent at Manchester City.
DM – Fernandinho
Fernandinho revolutionised the defensive-midfield role under Pep Guardiola. Even at the current age of 34, the Brazil international is an important cog in Guardiola’s plans. A tough tackler, Fernandinho’s ability to read and win the ball puts him on par with the Premier League’s best defensive midfielder’s.
CM – Yaya Toure
The closest midfielder the Premier League has seen to a player in the Patrick Vieira mould. Arsene Wenger decided against signing the Ivorian for Arsenal during a loan spell before Toure went on to excel at Barcelona under Pep Guardiola. Signing for City in 2010, Toure went on to play 316 games in all competitions in eight years, scoring 79 goals. Once Toure was on the ball, it was difficult to get him off it. His technical and physical ability made his of the of the best Premier League’s midfielders, and certainly one of the best Manchester City has seen.
CM – David Silva
When David Silva was at Valencia, a plethora of clubs were in the mix to sign the Spaniard and at 33, Silva has only gotten better with age. The Manchester City playmaker has an exceptional first touch and outstanding technical ability. Silva has played 416 games in all competitions, scoring 74 and creating 136, there’s not many better No. 10s in world football at the minute that are better than Silva.
RW – Kevin de Bruyne
Signed by Chelsea in 2012, the Belgium international spent time on loan at Genk and Werder Bremen before making a permanent move to Wolfsburg. His performances in Germany impressed Manchester City bosses which prompted them to sign the Belgian in 2015 for £68m. De Bruyne is an example of a complete midfielder, he’s even played as the deepest midfielder in Pep Guardiola’s system, as well as on the right, and centrally. His eye for a pass is reminiscent of Paul Scholes, Cesc Fabregas and Mesut Ozil whilst his technical ability allows De Bruyne to showcase some of his best talents.
LW – Raheem Sterling
Signed from Premier League rivals Liverpool in 2015 for £57m, Raheem Sterling needed little time to adapt to life at Manchester City. He was Pep Guardiola’s most important player during their record breaking title winning 2017/18 campaign whilst his technical ability and pace makes opposing defenders back off. Sterling is perhaps the deal of the decade with 89 goals and 71 assists in 220 games for Manchester City.
ST – Sergio Aguero
Where do you start? Sergio Aguero was the striker who clinched Manchester City their first every Premier League title. The Argentine’s composed finish against QPR sent not only City fans, but most football fans into euphoria with his stoppage time winner that saw the Premier League title go to the Etihad on the final day of the season, ahead of rivals Manchester City. The £36m City paid for the Argentine in 2011 is a steal whilst his 245 goals in 357 games in all competitions makes Aguero City’s top scorer, whilst his 174 Premier League goals is only one behind Thierry Henry, the Premier League’s top goalscoring foreigner.
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