Manchester City Season Review | A look at their 13/14 team stats

Manchester City Season Review | A look at their 13/14 team stats

It has been a very good year for Manchester City. After finishing second in the league and losing the FA Cup final in the 2012/13 season, City have bounced back by regaining the Premier League crown and winning the Capital One Cup. Manuel Pellegrini has brought real calm to a City dressing room that often had many problems. He has also brought a more fluid attacking style of football, which has brought them success this season.

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For Pellegrini himself, he has won his first league title in Europe after years of trying in Spain. City’s large and talented squad has been well handled by the Chilean and this has resulted in their second Premier League title in three years. Liverpool ran City very close this season, but in the end the depth in City’s squad was able to see them through.

Defence

Man City Defending

At the start of the season City were struggling defensively, particularly away from home. As the season wore on, they improved tremendously and ended up having the second best defensive record in the league. City conceded 37 goals this season, which can only be beaten by Chelsea who conceded 27. City managed to keep 16 clean sheets in the league, so these 37 goals came in 22 games. It is often said that without their captain Vincent Kompany, City are a completely different side defensively. When Kompany has played this season, they have only kept eight clean sheets and conceded 30 of their 37 goals, so this argument may not be as true as some believe.

Martin Demechelis has been much maligned by football fans and pundits alike, but the Argentinian comes out on top of most of City’s defensive stats. The former Malaga man made the most successful headed clearances (93) and the most successful clearances (183). He also had no errors leading to a shot or goal for City this season. In terms of tackling it is Pablo Zabaleta who is City’s most successful player. The Argentinian fullback put in the most tackles (120) and had the highest percentage won (77%) for one of City’s regular defenders. Fernandinho was involved in the most ground duels (308) but it is Zabaleta who was the most successful in them winning 156 of his 273.

Passing

City Passing

For much of the season Manchester City dominated their opponents. For this to happen their passing had to be a very important component of their game. As a team they managed an open play pass completion of 86%, which was the joint highest in the Premier League along with Arsenal.  City also made the second most passes in the league with 20755, only behind Arsenal.  Yaya Toure made the most passes in the Premier League this season with 2502 and has a passing accuracy of 90%. City’s other main central midfielder for much of the season, Fernandinho, also had a passing accuracy of 90%, showing the control that City had in games this season.

Creativity

City Creativity

City have a team blessed with fantastic creative talent and that was on show this season. As a team they created 543 chances for their teammates, including 399 from open play and 76 from set pieces. They also created 86 clear-cut chances, 52 of which were scored.

All in all they had 14 players who contributed an assist from their squad.  They had seven players who managed over five league assists, and had two players (Yaya Toure and David Silva) tied on nine for the most number of assists.  City’s most creative player from open was David Silva who created the 61 chances. Including set pieces, Samir Nasri was City’s most creative player as he created a total of 92 chances during the season.

Attacking

City Attacking

City’s potent attack was their main weapon for much of the season. The early season form of Sergio Aguero and Alvaro Negredo was supplemented by the end of season form of Edin Dzeko in front of goal. Added to this was the great form of Yaya Toure who managed to score 20 league goals from midfield. With these players contributions, City became the most powerful attacking team, scoring the most goals in the Premier League this season with 102. As a team, City had 14 different goal scorers, as well as three players who managed to score over 15 goals in the league.

In Sergio Aguero, City have a player who without injury, would have been even more effective than he already was. Aguero managed 17 league goals this season at a rate of one every 91 minutes. Considering he only started 20 games, this is a phenomenal record. Alongside him, Edin Dzeko, who only started 23 games, scored 16 goals at a rate of one every 124 minutes. With two strikers scoring so reliably, City put themselves in a very strong position. Yaya Toure’s 20 goals made him City’s top scorer. Remarkably, he scored all nine of his clear-cut chances this season. With such clinical finishing from midfield, Toure added an extra element to City’s attack. In the end this attacking power is what brought them their second Premier League title.

Conclusion

It was an excellent season by City showing their ability to bounce back from the failures of last year. They managed to get much of their transfer business done early last summer, which allowed for players to integrate well and buy into City’s playing philosophy. The league title was always City’s aim this season and although it took them to the final day to win it, it was thoroughly deserved. If anything the only disappointments will be their failure to progress further in the Champions League, however, Pellegrini managed to get the team through the group stage for the first time, which could also be seen as a success. Next year they will look to progress further and challenge in the latter stages, although they will not be helped by their squad being restricted. With such a strong squad, they will not need to spend as much as they have in the past on many players, but it is always good to strengthen if possible. This is what City will look to do in the close season.