The obsession Manchester City has with becoming a bigger club than United has produced a number of bizarre attempts in the last couple of years. Putting up giant billboards in the City centre, paying record transfer fees for players who can barely last 12 months at Eastlands and having Chief Executives making boastful claims in New York City bars all failed to make an impression so now they’re trying the most childish one of all. It almost seems as if City is trying to convince itself that it really is a big club.
The News Of The World ran a story reporting that “Manchester City chiefs are to announce record breaking season ticket sales as they prepare for an all out assault on the Premier League” and that they are “on the verge of selling all 36,000 season tickets as Roberto Mancini puts the finishing touches to his £250million super team.” The inference of course is that the increase in season ticket sales will turn City into Manchester’s leading football club!
What is not mentioned is that they could not even sell out their stadium last season when the club was involved in a thrilling, do or die but ultimately failed battle to qualify for a Champions League spot. If Eastlands had a capacity of 75,000 like Old Trafford instead of just 48,000, City would have been playing in front of half empty stands.
After spending so much of Sheik Mansour’s money on any player that could be convinced to sign for him, Mancini will be under enormous pressure to produce the goods because you can rest assured that City’s season ticket holders will be desperate to watch nothing less than a Premiership winning team next season.
Mancini is no fool and clearly understands how difficult it will be for City to fast track their way to the top. Perhaps it’s the reason why despite all that pressure, his number one objective is not to win the Premier League but to simply finish in the top four and secure a Champions League spot…maybe win something like the Europa League.
Despite paying out ridiculous wages like the reported £200,000 a week to recently signed Yaya Toure who began planning a return to Barcelona while the ink was still fresh on his City contract, Mancini knows full well that money alone cannot guarantee winning major silverware.
It’s interesting to note that after spending weeks in Spain’s World Cup winning camp with Liverpool’s Fernando Torres, star striker David Villa bluntly told the Daily Star that his Spanish striking partner would never join Manchester City. Why? “Because Torres isn’t money focused, he is obsessed with winning trophies not with money”
And quite simply, winning trophies is what genuine BIG clubs do best!
Can City be considered a big club after only winning one Championship in the last 63 years?