Manchester City begin their 2023/24 season this weekend with a trip to Turf Moor to face Burnley. It only feels like yesterday that Pep Guardiola’s men secured the treble, now a new season is upon us. Here is a preview of what lies ahead this season.
The champions head into the new season with two fresh faces in their squad. Croatian pair Mateo Kovacic and Josko Gvardiol have arrived from Chelsea and RB Leipzig respectively.
Kovacic has fit straight into the City squad since he arrived from Chelsea. He impressed during the pre-season and was one of City’s best in the FA Community Shield penalty shootout loss to Arsenal. After the loss of captain Ilkay Gundogan, the midfielder looks a perfect fit for Pep Guardiola’s squad.
Josko Gvardiol arrived at the Etihad less than a week ago from RB Leipzig. The Croatian defender adds tremendous quality to the treble winner’s already formidable defense. With his passing and dribbling ability and his defensive acumen, he looks like a solid investment for the champions.
As it stands currently only Ilkay Gundogan and Riyad Mahrez have departed from last season’s treble-winning squad.
Former skipper Gundogan left as a free transfer to Barcelona. He will no doubt be a loss to the City squad with his leadership and big game ability no longer able to be called upon by Pep Guardiola. He finished his City career on top of the world, so the perfect ending to his time with the champions was a fitting reward for his City career.
Riyad Mahrez left in a big money move to Al-Ahli in Saudi Arabia. The Algerian winger was a key part of Manchester City’s success in recent seasons. His loss to the City squad will be felt, with his goal and assist contributions needing replacing.
The season ahead
Pep Guardiola’s squad head into the new season determined to defend their treble of crowns won last season. After the heights of last season, the challenge is now maintaining the high-level set last season. The City boss won’t settle for anything less.
With the Premier League opener against Burnley to open the season, a chance at history awaits Manchester City. They are bidding to become the first side in Premier League history to win 4 consecutive league titles. The motivation should be high amongst the squad to attempt to do something never done before.
A further two new titles can arrive at the Etihad this season. The European Super Cup against Sevilla is next week. A trophy that so far hasn’t arrived at Manchester City. A shot at FIFA World Club World Cup glory also beckons for Pep’s side in December. It will be the treble winner’s first opportunity to claim the crown, so it will be another source of motivation for this season.
This will also be the first season Manchester City begin the season as European Champions. After such a long and arduous road to claim their maiden title, rest assured the champions will be determined to attempt to keep hold of what was won on a famous night in Istanbul.
With the FA Cup to be defended, and another shot at the Carabao Cup also on the agenda it promises to be a massive season ahead.
The signs during pre-season have been positive, and the City squad look and seems determined to maintain the level of last season. If they can get close another successful season may be on the cards.
An exciting season awaits, and the marathon begins at Turf Moor on Friday night.