Following Manchester’s City‘s rapid head-start over their rivals in transfer window acquisitions, many fans are beginning to play with line-up building apps to imagine how the team will look next season.
The acquisitions of Bernardo Silva, Mendy, Walker, Danilo and Ederson have brought a little clarity to this kind of pastime however it still isn’t an easy task as I found out.
Here are the issues:
Most analysts say that Pep will play a 4-3-3 formation next season. We also know that he covets Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez. The contenders for the front 3 roles then are: Aguero, Alexis & Gabriel Jesus.
Hard to imagine any of these 3 on the bench! That’s a trident to match the MSN at Barcelona or the BBC at Real Madrid.
Mouthwatering! But where would that leave Sane and Sterling? Perhaps then these two would flank just one of the three named above?
That front 3 would need an effective supply line so the central trio would have to involve either Gundogan or Fernandinho to hold behind David Silva and KDB.
Does this then mean both Bernardo and Toure start on the bench?
Moving further back the situation is a little clearer.
Ederson should be the no.1 with Bravo on standby.
Benjamin Mendy is the no.1 choice for LB. The acquisition of Kyle Walker at RB was very satisfying though there is still no indication that City will find more than just Danilo as cover.
Since we only really have 3 good CBs (I’m not counting Adarabioyo) and since one of these (Kompany) is an injury risk we need a new centre back. Pep would have loved to land Leonardo Bonucci but there are plenty of other contenders (Van Dijk, Koulibaly, Tah, Manolas etc)
It seems there is no answer to some of these puzzles except in terms of rotation, horses for courses etc.
We probably have to move away from the notion of a fixed starting line-up and get ready for the pundits to start on us early with the common refrain from the usual suspects of “Pep doesn’t know his best team”.
What do YOU think? Have fun with this little tool to try to solve Pep’s problems:)
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