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The Debate: Will Manchester City win the Premier League?

The Premier League looks set to deliver another gripping title battle with three teams vying for glory.

Liverpool currently lead the way after 25 matches but they have Arsenal and Manchester City in hot pursuit, the latter going in search of an unprecedented fourth consecutive Premier League title.

Pep Guardiola's side remain the favourites to retain their crown at 10/11 while Liverpool and Arsenal are priced at 15/8 and 17/2 respectively.

Will Manchester City come out on top? Or will their reign finally end?

Writers from the bet365 News Team debate whether Manchester City will get over the line and celebrate their sixth league title in seven seasons.


As they do every year when a team doesn’t put up 99 points, Manchester City will win the title.

We’ve seen it often enough over the last six years to know what’s going to happen over the next few months: Manchester City will put their early-season struggles behind them, hit top gear and win the title. 

In 2018, City steamrolled their way to 100 points; the season after they had to be at their absolute best to pip Liverpool. In 2020, they were miles below their best and has lost the title by Christmas. The year after, following another slow start, they reeled off 15 straight wins to put themselves in pole position and reclaim the title. In 2022 they again pipped Liverpool, and last season, with Arsenal top of the league, City won 12 on the bounce to win the title with two games to spare.

Unfortunately for the chasing pack, there’s no evidence that this season will be any different.

Yes, Arsenal have put a nice winning run together, and while the results – 5-0, 6-0, 5-0 – have been impressive, they only count for three points at a time. The win over Liverpool was more impressive; the Reds were totally outplayed – but Arsenal’s 3-1 win was the result City fans needed most.

Arsenal are a fantastic team under Mikel Arteta and will likely go close, but even after winning five games in a row, they’d need to win their final 13 games in a row (making it 18 in total – something no one has ever done) just to get to 94 points. While that might be enough, Arsenal aren’t winning their final 18 games.

The Gunners still have Chelsea at home, Manchester City away, Aston Villa at home, Tottenham away and Manchester United away and they’ll do well to reach the mid-80s, which won’t be enough for the title.

If anyone’s to oust City it’s Liverpool, but even they look slightly too fragile. It appears Jurgen Klopp doesn’t know his best midfield three, and whatever his optimal midfield is, it’s a long way behind the Fabinho/Wijnaldum/Henderson triumvirate of 2020.

Their attacking options are plentiful. The best front three is probably Diogo Jota flanked by Darwin Nunez and Mohamed Salah with Luis Dias and Cody Gapko waiting in the wings, though Jota could be sidelined for a lengthy period of time, and while the Reds will be City’s closest challengers, they aren’t quite at City’s level.

The narrative has quickly changed on City on the back of their draw with Chelsea. They’d stumbled majorly before heading off to the Club World Cup, but since returning, they’d won six on the bounce, and while the opposition was nothing to shout about (perhaps with the exception of Newcastle away), they were winning games with the minimal of fuss until Chelsea rolled into town, and even then it required a shocking off day from Erling Haaland.

The Norwegian has spent a while out injured but will be back amongst the goals before long – he’s already notched twice against Everton and there’ll be plenty more to come, and that’s before addressing Kevin De Bruyne. It can’t be long before we’re having conversations about where he ranks amongst the Premier League’s all-time greats and how close he is to Thierry Henry.

Since his return from injury, the brilliant Belgian has come off the bench to win the game against Newcastle and had registered an assist in every game until his blank against Chelsea, but as with Haaland, there’s plenty more to come from him. 

City do still have trips to Tottenham and Liverpool to come, as well as hosting Arsenal and Manchester United, but if they can get through their Anfield jaunt unscathed, there’s no reason to think they can be stopped. 

Pep Guardiola’s men have dropped a surprising number of points already this season and it feels unlikely to be another 90+-point season, but City are the best team in the country with their best player getting back to fitness and their best striker getting back amongst the goals.

In 2019, City won their last 14 games to win the title by a point. Three years later they took 30 points from a possible 36 to again hold Liverpool off by a point.

Don’t be surprised when they do it again this time.

It's going to take something special to end Manchester City's reign... Liverpool and Arsenal have what it takes.

In years gone by, they have been inevitable.

Five of the last six Premier League titles have gone the way of Manchester City and in three of those seasons, we have watched them hunt down their prey, revel in the scent of fear and devour their victims.

Liverpool lost one game in 2018/19 and it wasn’t enough. Arsenal led the table for 248 days in 2022/23 but were still toppled by Pep Guardiola’s relentless winning machine.

We have had the pleasure of witnessing one of the greatest teams in history flex their superiority and strut their way to a phenomenal period of success.

There was a sense of acceptance when Kevin De Bruyne marked his return to Premier League action with a goal and an assist to snatch victory from Newcastle in January. The best player in the division had recharged his wand and was ready to inflict greater suffering on City’s title rivals.

The attacking frustrations that were exhibited in defeats to Wolves, Arsenal and Aston Villa had evaporated. Their defensive frailties that have been consistently exposed this season, having conceded 21 goals with an xGA of 17.8, were seemingly papered over.

But Man City’s 1-1 draw with Chelsea at the weekend was a timely reminder that there will be days when an incisive counter-attack will carve Man City open and there will be days that the exceptional Erling Haaland will miss a glut of chances.

When that does happen – which it will - it’s up to Liverpool and Arsenal to take advantage.

Fortunately for the Premier League neutral, both are currently demonstrating that they’re capable of taking the fight down to the wire.

Liverpool lead the way and survived the absence of Mohamed Salah by taking nine points from a possible 12. It speaks volumes of their squad depth that their attacking output has not diminished without the Egyptian talisman present. Diogo Jota and Darwin Nunez have stepped up and that’s been a theme for Liverpool throughout the season.

Connor Bradley has filled the void of Trent Alexander-Arnold, Curtis Jones has evolved and deputised for Alexis Mac Allister and Dominik Szoboszlai and Jurgen Klopp has found solutions to a catalogue of injury issues; that will need to be the case again in light of injuries to Jota and Nunez.

The foundation to their success so far has been their home form. They’ve taken 32 points from a possible 36 on their own turf and if there is one element that can help Liverpool over the line, it’s Anfield.

And while the news of Klopp’s pending departure may have brought long-term grief to Liverpool supporters, it can certainly provide a short-term gain.

Any concerns on whether Klopp’s decision would have a detrimental impact on his players have been banished and the squad looks united. No team has taken more points from losing positions than Liverpool and they have resilience in abundance.

Then there is Arsenal. A 2-1 defeat to Fulham on New Year’s Eve left their challenge in tatters but advance six weeks and the Gunners’ resurgence has been remarkable.

The win over Liverpool was pivotal. It’s injected new life into Mikel Arteta’s camp and they’ve since romped to successive victories with an irrepressible swagger. Last year they failed to capitalise on the momentum they had built but on this occasion, it appears they’re better equipped mentally to cope with the pressures when battling it out at the top.

More importantly, the spine of the team is incredibly strong and it’s telling in their defensive numbers. They’ve conceded the fewest goals in the division (15), have an xGA of 13.31 and their set-piece proficiency at both ends of the pitch has been impressive.

David Raya has cemented his role as Arsenal’s number one, the partnership of William Saliba and Gabriel Magalhães continues to flourish and with the protection Declan Rice provides, they have the ingredients to grind out victories where necessary.

March is set to deliver some crucial twists to the title race. Liverpool entertain Man City on March 10 – a fixture the Reds have fared well in - and then Arsenal take on the Citizens at the Etihad on March 31.

Man City do have arguably the toughest run-in of the three. Matches against Brighton and Aston Villa are potential banana skins while a trip to Tottenham awaits them in April, a fixture they’ve failed to win in the Premier League since 2018.

Even then, the know-how of Guardiola’s outfit and the impeccable standards they have set in recent years makes it extremely difficult to look past them. 

And yet, as we approach the final third of the season, Liverpool and Arsenal are both in a prime position to wrestle the title away from the Etihad.

Whether you believe in fate or not, nothing would be more fitting than for Klopp to depart with a Premier League winner's medal around his neck.

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