Can Manchester City Secure The Flukiest Title Of All Time?

Date: 24th January 2014 at 7:09 pm
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It’s officially on. The flukiest league title-winning campaign since football began (1992) is within a certain team’s grasp. Week after week, Manchester City spawn win after win against all the odds and against all recognised logic and perceived ideas of fairness and justice. The team stops at nothing in its quest for three points. Referees are harassed until they overturn goals, opposition players are called offside should they venture within 40 yards of the City goal and any indiscretions by City players are conveniently ignored. Vincent Kompany only has to raise his arm and the referee immediately stops play.

Strange things happen with time to this narrative too. An offside decision against Raheem Sterling magically becomes a disallowed goal in dispatches, despite the whistle going before he even touched the ball. A shirt-pull on a Liverpool player is given greater coverage than 90 minutes of shirt-pulling on a variety of City players. A two-month injury caused by a cynical tackle that wasn’t sufficiently cautioned is not factored into the luck debate. Cherry-picking has rarely been this precise.

But don’t worry yourself either about the bad decisions that have gone against City. The offside goals against Aston Villa and Swansea. The free-kick that shouldn’t have been at Villa too, leading to their 2nd goal. The wrongly disallowed goal at home to Newcastle, the illegal goal at Sunderland and the failure to send off one of their players. Don’t waste time thinking about Chelsea’s disgraceful equalizer at home to West Brom or Samuel Eto’s carte blanche tackling policy against Liverpool, or Liverpool’s own game-turning “Spanish penalty” against Stoke in the past week. Not important.

Focus instead on City’s constant good fortune. We have a narrative, an angle, and it’s been dictated by whinging managers and blinkered fans, as always.

At least this spectacular run of good fortune brings with it the opportunity for laughs. With each victory comes a spectacular breakdown from the opposing manager, the vanquished soul often displaying the grace of a horny *NAME REMOVED FOR LEGAL REASONS* outside a closed massage parlour.

Brendan Rogers questioned the geographical roots of the referee, Tony Pulis bemoaned City’s wealth (again) and Alan Pardew morphed into Michael Douglas in Falling Down. God help us all if a decision goes against Cardiff on Saturday, as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will no doubt blame defeat on the Illuminati (Bavarian branch) or the Knights Templar. At least Pardew apologised, so no need for an FA charge there, something for Luis Suarez to consider the next time he resorts to cannibalism.

City are no longer ruining football by spending a billion on the team, now they are bribing referees and getting all the calls. This is the proof that the club has “arrived” and the next logical step is to form some sort of semi-secret cabal with other clubs (call it something snappy, like the G14), threaten a breakaway super-league, then watch the money and the trophies roll in. Mission duly accomplished.

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