Manchester City's spending surges English superiority!

Raising the bar.

Manchester should not be criticized for the lavish spending which has fueled a charge to the top of soccer’s Premier League.  Since September 2008, Sheikh Mansour has spent over £400 million on players to propell his team into the Champions League. According to legendary Manchester United midfielder Roy Keane ;

“if you want to make it the best league, you’ve got to bring the best players,”


We all know Roy Keane for his on-field heroics at Manchester United, however he does bring up a very interesting and under-discussed view of Manchester City's spending here. The English FA and the English League itself should be praising Sheikh Mansours spending and the fact that this has helped establish the Premier League as the best league in the world.

Manchester City inflicted their best ever result against Manchester United this season, beating them 6-1 at Old Trafford. Mario Balotelli, Edin Dzeko, David Silva and Sergio Aguero, City’s scorers at Old Trafford, cost over 100 million pounds in total. The team’s fans yesterday taunted United by chanting, “the city is ours,” as the goals flowed.

City, which last won the league in 1968, has been able to poach the best players by paying the highest wages in the game and offering transfer fees other teams can’t match.

“Is it great for the game? Not necessarily, but it adds a bit more interest, and it’s made City stronger,” Keane said. “I don’t think the Man City fans will be too worried about the sheikhs who have put the money in. I think they’re like ‘we couldn’t care less, we’re challenging.’”

On one hand are the new financial fair play rules supposed to usher in a new era of parsimony and restraint. On the other, a desperate fear of missing out on the Champions League, and not only the guaranteed financial windfall (Manchester United banked £53.2m last season) but its importance in the global brand-building arms race that the clubs hope will help them boost revenues and compete in the new FFP landscape.

In this window, Premier League clubs have spent more than £130m on players under the age of 21. That compares with £60m in 2010 and just £21m in 2009.

To those who hate Man City and other nouveau riche teams, I say read the above. The argument that clubs should evolve like United, Arsenal and Liverpool did over the years is simply not valid today. Why? Because smaller clubs will always be playing catch up while the bigger ones go around setting up sports academies in Asia and Africa (among other things).

You have to spend to shatter the hegemony. Though I support Barcelona, I would love to see two billionaires step in and take control of Valencia and At. Madrid, buy just like Man City did, and ask a few questions of the Spanish duopoly.