Compared: Manchester City and the greatest Premier League sides of all-time
Manchester City are on-course to challenge for a record-breaking quadruple, after already winning the EFL Cup and still being in contention to win the Premier League, UEFA Champions League and the FA Cup.
Whilst they are definitely one of the best sides to grace the Premier League in recent years, do they have what it takes to challenge the best Premier League sides since the league's inaugural campaign in 1992/93.
Manchester City of 2017-Present
Manchester City have massively improved since the summer of 2017, as Pep Guardiola built a magnificent squad, strengthening where was needed from the previous, mediocre 2016/17 season, when the club finished without a trophy. Guardiola bought plenty of defenders, most notably Aymeric Laporte, who became the club's record signing, and as a result pushed on, utilising the brilliance of Kevin de Bruyne and Sergio Aguero in attack, winning the League and the EFL Cup, doing the former by breaking plenty of records, including that of recording the most points (100 points) with the the best goal difference in history (+79).
It was always going to be tough to follow up on the magnificent season that they had, but they have managed to do so in a way, as they are favourites to go on and win a quadruple this season. The team has already won the EFL Cup, whilst are currently second with a game in hand in the Premier League, in the UEFA Champions League Quarter-Finals and are in the FA Cup Semi-Finals. With the outrageous squad size that they have, they are definitely contenders to win all four competitions, and plenty of people are deeming them to be the best Premier League side of all-time, even if they do not win the quadruple, yet if they were to do so, it would definitely confirm them as one of the best, if not the best.
Manchester United of 1998-99
Sir Alex Ferguson, the greatest manager of all-time, had the best campaign back in 1998-99, when he led a very young, Manchester United side, and blended it with plenty of experience, consequently winning the treble, becoming the only English side to ever do so, winning the Premier League, the FA Cup and the EFL Cup (then known as the League Cup).
The team's core winning formula was the 'never-say-die' attitude, as the side won plenty of games the tough way, most notably the UEFA Champions League final against Bayern Munich, after being a goal down, eventually scoring two goals in the space of two minutes in stoppage time. However, they also thumped teams, with scores such as 8-1 against Nottingham Forest and 5-2 against Leicester City coming to mind. As a result of this fantastic achievement, Sir Alex Ferguosn, the mastermind behind this record-breaking season, was awarded with a knighthood.
Arsenal of 2003-04
The famous Arsenal team, assembled by Arsene Wenger, nicknamed 'The Invincibles', despite not doing as well in other competitions, Arsenal are still the only Premier League side to ever finish a season without a single league loss. The team was filled with top talent, including the legendary duo of Thierry Henry and Denis Bergkamp, whilst also being resolute at the back with a young Ashley Cole and an experienced Sol Campbell, whilst Patrick Vieria was the defensive midfielder doing all of the hard work.
Henry's brilliance was the main reason for Arsenal's record-breaking run in the league, scoring 30 goals in 37 games, hence being responsible for 41% of the team's goals in the Premier League that season. However, the solid defence was also crucial to them winning the league, conceding just 26 goals in the 38 games that were played in the league.
Chelsea of 2004-06
Jose Mourinho's arrival at Chelsea was met with plenty of hype around England, especially after the Portuguese manager defied all odds by leading a very young Porto side to winning the UEFA Champions League in 2004, prompting Chelsea and Roman Abramovich to get the young manager to the club. Mourinho immediately introduced a style of play that was revolutionary at the time, and he managed to perfect it, setting up his Chelsea team to be defensively sound at the back, with the 04/05 season being typical of his play style, as the team conceded just 15 goals in the league. Through the fantastic defence that Mourinho set up, including John Terry and Ricardo Carvalho, the team broke the record of the most clean sheets in the league, racking up 25 clean sheets. In his debut season at Chelsea, Mourinho went on to win the Premier League, the League Cup and got to the Semi-Finals of the UEFA Champions League.
In his second season, Mourinho's team was once again very resolute, conceding just 22 goals in the league, winning back-to-back Premier League titles and reaching the Semi-Finals of the FA Cup. Whilst the team did not manage to impress as much as in the previous season, the team managed to get a recognised goalscorer in Frank Lampard, with the Chelsea legend scoring 20 goals in 49 appearances in all competitions, which is remarkable considering that he was a midfielder.
Manchester United 2006-11
The late 2000's were signified with Manchester United completely dominating the Premier League, with Sir Alex Ferguson's young players showing their quality, especially with Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney, Carlos Tevez, Dimitar Berbatov and Javier Hernandez, all becoming top players. The team was characterised by the use of the traditional 4-4-2, with all of the attackers constantly switching with the wide midfielders, a tactic that the legendary Sir Alex perfected, along with assistants Mike Phelan and Rene Meulensteen.
The success was signified through the team winning the Premier League in four of the five seasons of this period, whilst also winning the UEFA Champions League in 2007/08, and also winning the League Cup twice, along with the FIFA Club World Cup in 2008. Apart from winning the Champions League in 2007/08, the club also managed to reach the final in 2008/09, and 2010/11, being beaten by Pep Guardiola's great Barcelona team on both occasions.
Do Manchester City deserve a spot amongst these highly-successful sides, even if they do not win the quadruple?