In a condensed season played behind closed doors, Manchester City showed their mettle by regaining the Premier League title.
They have now won three of the last four under Pep Guadiola, whose appointment has raised standards and expectations at the top of English football. After missing out on the title to Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool in 2020, Man City were desperate to reassert their dominance.
Despite a poor start, they did so in spectacular fashion, winning 15 consecutive league games between December and March to pull clear of the chasing pack. There were a few wobbles towards the end of the season but by then the job was already done and focus had shifted to the Champions League.
Man City’s success was made all the more impressive by the fact that they spent long periods playing without a recognised striker in the absence of Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus.
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Ilkay Gundogan finished as their top scorer in the league with 13 goals, but they were still scored more goals than any other team by a considerable margin.
Kevin De Bruyne, Ferran Torres, Phil Foden, Riyad Mahrez and Raheem Sterling all chipped in for Guardiola’s side, who also conceded fewer goals than anyone else.
The arrival of Ruben Dias from Benfica made a huge difference and he struck up an impressive centre-back partnership with the revitalised John Stones.
Dias won plenty of plaudits for helping Man City to 19 clean sheets and was named as both the Premier League Player of the Season and the FWA Footballer of the Year.
He was also included in the PFA Team of the Year alongside five of his teammates – Ederson, Stones, Joao Cancelo, De Bruyne and Gundogan.
Although Man City reached the Champions League final for the first time in their history, they suffered defeat to Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea in Porto.
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