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Make no mistake about it; Roberto Mancini did very well to win the title with Manchester City last season and was deservedly hailed as one of the best managers in England.
This season most people thought that all City needed to do was to make minor changes and add to the quality in the team.
That did not happen in the summer though. The top class signings, like Arsenal and Spurs contract-rebels Robin van Persie and Luka Modric, did not appear and from a position of great strength the Citizens were seemingly pegged back by their rivals who all strengthened significantly.
The lack of summer signings at City became a major plotline as stories of a bust-up between Mancini and, Director of football, Brian Marwood began to emerge and as the season began the Italian was talking more about tactical changes to his team than in new arrivals.
With that in mind we can see now that the champion Mancini of the 2012/13 season is more reminiscent of the Mancini from 2010/11 than of last season.
This term the Italian has reverted to type and is cautious before adventurous. Take City's two worst performances this season against Liverpool and Real Madrid as perfect examples.
Last year, on the way to winning the title, City used a variation of a 4-4-2 formation in almost every single game.
This year in just six games he has already changed his system three times in an effort at combating the opposition instead of playing to his own team's superb strengths.
Against Liverpool, City used a 3-5-2 formation that completely gave midfield away and was ripped apart on the flanks.
While against Real Madrid in the Champions League he utilised a narrow variant of the 4-3-3 formation that exposed his full-backs, and specifically the unfit Maicon, to Madrid's rapid attacks.
On both occasions his star players of Joe Hart and Yaya Toure rose to the occasion but if he keeps tinkering even these great players will eventually run out of steam as their tactics are used against them.
This weekend Roberto Mancini welcomes Arsene Wenger and an extremely swift counter-attacking Arsenal team to the Etihad.
If he chooses a narrow formation like he did against Madrid or a static formation like he did against Liverpool, City will be ripped apart.
In this regard Roberto Mancini's biggest enemy as he heads into his first crunch game of the season is himself.
He needs to rediscover the adventurous Mancini of last season and unless he does City will win nothing this year, starting with the game against Arsenal.