Are Manchester City primed for consecutive Champions League triumphs?

Manchester City is once again the odds-on favorite to win the UEFA Champions League title. They could go from having no title to having two in the 2020s, a feat that only Real Madrid has been able to replicate in past decades since the European Cup got renamed to the Champions League.

haaland man city

Pep Guardiola’s men are the current holders and with that in mind, it is understandable that there is a rush for Man City tickets at the moment.

The Sky Blues achieved the monumental feat by playing some brilliant football last season. This season, they are a lot more exposed defensively but they have unlocked a new side to their game. The Cityzens are now grittier and willing to fight to win matches from losing positions.

Man City in the 2023/24 UCL

Manchester City were drawn in Group G alongside Red Bull Leipzig, Young Boys and Crvena Zvezda. They played six group stage games as is customary with the now redundant format to amass 18 points and finish at the top of their group. This means they won all six of their group-stage games.

They – alongside record winners and fellow favourites Real Madrid – were the only team to come out of the group stage unscathed. They scored the most goals (18) but conceded seven, which was five more than they did in the 2022/23 competition which they won. Their 18 group stage goals were also more than their tally from the 2022/23 competition, where they drew two group stage games before going all the way to win the title against Inter Milan.

This shows a marked improvement in their play attacking-wise. Their goal tally covered up for the multitude of mistakes they made in defence and that is how they were able to come out unscathed from the 2023/24 group stages.

Their path to the final of this season’s competition is relatively easy, which means they have the upper hand.

Ranking the favourites to win the UCL alongside Man City

Real Madrid

After winning the title 14 times in its history with the last four coming between 2014 and 2022, it has become a question of “when” not “if” Real Madrid will win the title again.

Jude Bellingham Real Madrid

They have reached the semifinals in all but two of those seasons in which they racked up four titles, including a three-peat. They started this season as favourites as well and made sure to put the rest of the clubs on notice that they wanted a 15th title.

They are on equal footing with City in terms of defence but lose out to the current holders in the attacking department. Still, Madrid have more history and tournament experience than City, which makes it difficult to rule them out.

Bayern Munich

Bayern Munich came into the tournament as favourites but confidence in their ability dipped after their group stage performance.

They finished at the top of their group with five wins and a draw to rack up 16 points. They also conceded one less goal than City did in the group stage. They were drawn against Lazio in the round of 16 and that did not go so well.

Away from the competition, they look bereft of ideas and are about to lose out on the German Bundesliga to Xabi Alonso and his Bayer 04 Leverkusen team. Their path to the final is also not as smooth as City’s.

Should both teams meet, the odds are in the English team’s favour, which means they pose no serious threat.

Inter Milan

The Nerazzurri are the dark horses of this season’s competition.

Their group stage outing holds no candle to City, Madrid or Bayern’s, however, what stood out for many watchers of the competition is their fighting spirit.

Inter were finalists last season thanks to the same fighting spirit they are showing this season. They may not have the numbers or the points on the board, but they look like a proper knockout competition team.

City found it hard to crack their defences last season in the final. It could be harder this season if both teams happen to meet down the line or even in the final.

Rating Man City’s chances of a second-straight UCL win

The Cityzens are arguably the best team in Europe at the moment. They may be struggling in defence but no team has more depth in attack or defence than they do, bar Real Madrid.

Manchester City will also face easier opponents thanks to their seeding in the league, which could guarantee them an easier pathway to the semifinals at least.

Speaking in a recent interview, in-form Phil Foden believes City surely have what it takes to replicate their treble-winning season from last term in the current campaign.

“It was a question we were asking ourselves at the start of the season as well,” the 23-year-old said of trying to replicate last year’s trophy haul.

“We’re showing that we’re still determined and playing the same football as last year and still wanting to win all the games. Hopefully, that continues and we don’t drop our level or form.

“We’re focused – we stick by each other and it’s a pleasure to be a part of this team. I look around the dressing room and I still see the determination and hunger,”

“I look to set myself goals and achievements all the time. I’m really delighted with that.

“I think it’s the most run of games that I’ve played in a City shirt consistently – I’m in good form, scoring consistently and helping the team as much as I can… I want to keep doing that.

All things being equal, they will be replicating Madrid’s monumental achievement of winning the Champions League back-to-back. However, the fact that they might be pushed in the Premier League title race could play a part and we’ll have to see how that plays out.


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